promptMethods {methods}R Documentation

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)


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


The R package methods implements, with a few exceptions, the programming interface for classes and methods in the book Programming with Data (John M. Chambers, Springer, 1998), in particular sections 1.6, 2.7, 2.8, and chapters 7 and 8.

While the programming interface for the methods package follows the reference, the R software is an original implementation, so details in the reference that reflect the S4 implementation may appear differently in R. Also, there are extensions to the programming interface developed more recently than the reference. For a discussion of details see ?Methods and the links from that documentation.

See Also

prompt and promptClass

[Package methods version 2.5.0 Index]