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st: hsearch


From   Fred Wolfe <fwolfe@arthritis-research.org>
To   statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu
Subject   st: hsearch
Date   Fri, 21 Apr 2006 06:52:31 -0500

I have been using the very useful -hsearch- program. I wanted to make a few comments and suggestions as to how it might be made even more useful. These comments might not be generalizable to other users.

When searching some questions are:

Am I looking for a Stata/STB program or for a personal program?
Do I want to know the name of the program?
Or do I want to know details of the program.

-hsearch- combines a search of personal, STB and Stata files. Here is an example where -hsearch- didn't work optimally for me. I have many programs that manipulate age, often for the purposes of specific reports or specialized analyses. -hsearch- produced 256 matches on age. It was hard to find what I wanted. When I searched my personal help and/or ado files, using Stata help search and ado search programs that I wrote that restrict the search to the personal directory and, optionally, to keywords, I found 11 programs.

I think it would improve the usefulness of -hsearch- to allow searches separately for personal, Stata/STB, and the combination of these directories.

In addition, if you are only trying to remember the name of the program, single line output for each file, as an option, would improve readability.

I find it very helpful when searching my files and co-worker files to know the date, version and author. Perhaps it might be possible to search date and version fields in help files. Right now there is no version field and the date field presumably reflects the help file date. Would it be a good idea to add these details to help files, generally?

In any event, a simple improvement would be to optionally restrict searches as to directories and output length (single line vs. multiline).

Fred

Fred Wolfe
National Data Bank for Rheumatic Diseases
Wichita, Kansas
Tel (316) 263-2125 Fax (316) 263-0761
fwolfe@arthritis-research.org


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