[Rd] Rd output garbled in some circumstances

From: Ross Boylan <ross_at_biostat.ucsf.edu>
Date: Wed, 13 Jan 2010 15:15:36 -0800


I'm having trouble getting correct help output in some circumstances for a package I've created. Though this is not an issue with the current R, I would like my package to work with previous ones as well.

I'm looking for suggestions about how I could rework my .Rd file so that it will work with prior R's. In particular, R 2.7 is in the latest stable release of Debian, so I'd like to solve the problem for 2.7.

The .Rd file is for a function and has an arguments section like this \arguments{
\item{formula}{ A formula giving the vectors containing
## skipped

    covariates. }
## skipped
\item{stepdenominator}{See \code{stepnumerator} just above.}
  

\item{do.what}{\describe{

    \item{1}{By default, calculates a maximimum likelihood. To evaluate       a single likelihood, set all parameters to fixed. }     \item{0}{Count number of paths and related statistics without       evaluating the likelihood.}
    \item{-1}{Get detailed counts (but no likelihoods) associated with       each case. The return value is a matrix.}     \item{10}{Use the model to generate a random path for each

      case. returning a \code{data.frame} with simulated observed states
      and times and all other data as observed.}
    }}

\item{testing}{This argument is only for use by developers. Set it
## etc

This comes out fine in a pdf, but ?mspath (the function) produces, in part,
<quote>
stepdenominator: See 'stepnumerator' just above.

     1 By default, calculates a maximimum likelihood.  To evaluate a
          single likelihood, set all parameters to fixed. 

     0 Count number of paths and related statistics without evaluating
          the likelihood.

</quote>
in R 2.7. The "do.what" header has vanished. In R 2.10 it's fine.

Is there an error in my documentation format? Even if not, is there some change I could make that would get R 2.7 to work better?

The R change log doesn't show anything obviously related to this, though it has several references to unspecified fixes to the documentation system. I also tried looking at the bug tracker, but couldn't find anything--in fact I had trouble identifying bugs in the documentation system as opposed to bugs in the documentation.

Thanks.
Ross Boylan



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