Generate a Shell for Documentation of Formal Methods


Generates a shell of documentation for the methods of a generic function.


promptMethods(f, filename = NULL, methods)



a character string naming the generic function whose methods are to be documented.


usually, a connection or a character string giving the name of the file to which the documentation shell should be written. The default corresponds to the coded topic name for these methods (currently, f followed by "-methods.Rd"). Can also be FALSE or NA (see below).


Optional methods list object giving the methods to be documented. By default, the first methods object for this generic is used (for example, if the current global environment has some methods for f, these would be documented).

If this argument is supplied, it is likely to be getMethods(f, where), with where some package containing methods for f.


If filename is FALSE, the text created is returned, presumably to be inserted some other documentation file, such as the documentation of the generic function itself (see prompt).

If filename is NA, a list-style representation of the documentation shell is created and returned. Writing the shell to a file amounts to cat(unlist(x), file = filename, sep = "\n"), where x is the list-style representation.

Otherwise, the documentation shell is written to the file specified by filename.


If filename is FALSE, the text generated; if filename is NA, a list-style representation of the documentation shell. Otherwise, the name of the file written to is returned invisibly.


Chambers, John M. (2008) Software for Data Analysis: Programming with R Springer. (For the R version.)

Chambers, John M. (1998) Programming with Data Springer (For the original S4 version.)

See Also

prompt and promptClass

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