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st: RE: Keeping track of goodies

From   "Nick Cox" <>
To   <>
Subject   st: RE: Keeping track of goodies
Date   Tue, 24 Sep 2002 15:57:08 +0100

Dick Campbell
> Over the past year I have read this list assiduously, and
> almost every day find some new user-written routine that I
> just have to have. Its free, and mostly just a click away.
> The problem, of course, is that when it comes time to use
> the stuff I can't remember what I have! Sometimes I forget
> that I have actually obtained something that will solve a
> particular problem (e.g. I forgot that I had acquired mmerge)
> and sometimes I know it but can't remember the name.
> I suspect that the answer to this is in understanding the structure
> of the various folders containing ADO's, but I wonder if there is
> a system for automatically logging one's changes to STATA. I
> would find a .ado that tells me what I have done to stata in the
> last x months to be extremely helpful. Unfortunately, I am still
> way to new to stata to attempt such a thing myself.

Fortunately, I doubt that anyone need do this. 

If you used -net-, knowingly or unknowingly, 
to install packages, then just typing 

. ado 

will show you what you have installed. 
For example, stuff installed with -ssc- 
is, under the { hood | bonnet},  
in fact installed using -net-. 
And, what's more to the point, 

. ado, find(whatever) 

will search for the keyword whatever (and possibly 
find packages to do with it). 

If you copied stuff in some other way, 
this is of no help for such stuff. This 
is one further reason to use official Stata tools 
to install user-written software. 

Another answer is to remind that -findit- finds things
and sets you up for installation: 
whether you have already installed something, it is 
often a good idea to re-install, as you may 
well be getting a newer, less buggy, more 
featureful, more tasteful version than the 
one you squirrelled away a while back. 

Ronan Conroy some while ago on this list described
how he used a Stata help file he maintained himself to 
keep track of stuff he found useful. Ultimately 
only you can design the paper or electronic 
means which is optimum for your mental categories
and habits. A lot of us still use paper notebooks
for similar purposes! 


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