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st: RE: RE: Re: RE: Utility for Changing Directories

Subject   st: RE: RE: Re: RE: Utility for Changing Directories
Date   Wed, 30 Oct 2002 11:34:46 -0500

Nick Winter wrote
> As others have noted:
> --command names under four characters are discouraged 
> --command names that are English/American words are discouraged
> --the -cmdname- command exists to register (ie, lay claim to) commands
> that meet those rules and are not previously registered
> -- -cmdname- is little-used

Until now, I had no idea -cmdname- existed despite having contributed a
number of files to SSC.  Ignorance is no excuse, however, the lack of uptake
w.r.t -cmdname- is not surprising given how little publicity it got
recently: a search of all 35,000 messages on the Statalist archive doesn't
turn up any references to -cmdname-.  The fact that -findit cmdname- points
to an insert in STB-51 is moot since you have to know the command exists
before even thinking of running the search.

and also wrote
> My program 'c' has existed on my personal system for a while as 'c',
> which caused me no problems, since I do not have Ulrich Kohler's
> calculator program of the same name.  When I decided to post it
> publicly, via SSC, I decided to keep the name, since the 
> whole point of
> the program is to save keystrokes when changing directories, I didn't
> want to name it something longer.

The 5-character rule for names is _the_ one rule I have found most irksome
for the very reason Nick mentioned.  As a work-around (which also solves the
'Dictionary word' rule), I set up an additional folder named C:\ado\abbrev\
on my adopath.  This new folder takes precedence over all other system
directories.  In it, I store scores of mini ado files whose names are
abbreviations I want to allow for commands.  These commands may either be my
own, official Stata, or other user-written ones.

For e.g., I originally wanted to name my Vector Error Correction Models
routine ecm.ado.  Rules being rules, I decided to call it vececm.ado which
is also consistent with Kit Baum's -vecar- package (for vector
autoregressions).  But to allow -ecm- as an abbreviation for vececm.ado, I
simply added ecm.ado below

program define ecm
      vececm `0'

to my c:\ado\abbrev directory.  That way, I may refer to vececm.ado by
simply typing -ecm ...- and distribute the program on SSC as vececm.ado
which is consistent with the conventions.  Please note that I have
absolutely no desire of convincing _anyone_ to subscribe to this approach.
I just wanted to present a simple work around which some may find useful and
can even be extended to abbreviate other commands.

Patrick Joly

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