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st: re: TeX template for PDF help files

From   "Newson, Roger B" <>
To   "''" <>
Subject   st: re: TeX template for PDF help files
Date   Mon, 23 Nov 2009 16:12:41 +0000

I would agree with Kit's idea re the SMCL file -examplehelpfile.sthlp-, which of course is distributed with official Stata in the BASE folder, which can be identified by typing


in Stata. It would be nice for all users to be able to access it, and make copies, without having to get into the official Stata folders.

Re providing TeX templates, as I understand it, the StataCorp policy on this (as of 26 June 2009) was given on StataList by Alan Riley, and can be found at
where we were told that such templates would be made available at some time during the life of Stata 11.

Best wishes


Roger B Newson BSc MSc DPhil
Lecturer in Medical Statistics
Respiratory Epidemiology and Public Health Group
National Heart and Lung Institute
Imperial College London
Royal Brompton Campus
Room 33, Emmanuel Kaye Building
1B Manresa Road
London SW3 6LR
Tel: +44 (0)20 7352 8121 ext 3381
Fax: +44 (0)20 7351 8322
Web page:
Departmental Web page:

Opinions expressed are those of the author, not of the institution.

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Kit Baum
Sent: 23 November 2009 14:46
Subject: st: re: TeX template for PDF help files

Nick Winter said

Re: SMCL, I'm no huge fan, but it does seem to have some good features 
tied to the needs of displaying things in Stata (e.g., ability to run 
example code).  In any case, I find coding SMCL by hand about as hard as 
coding simple HTML by hand, and considerably easier than coding simple 
LaTeX by hand.  So I'd love to see the next iteration of the do-file 
editor include a more full-blown environment for writing help files.

A good start, which would require no change to the logic of the do-file editor beyond allowing it to open and save .smcl files (as most editors have an option to open any kind of file if you insist---e.g. no reason why it can't open .txt files), would be to provide the sample file given in [U] 18.11.6 in both filled-in and blank template form, and make it easy to load those files into the do-fie editor as read-only documents, to be saved under a different name. We're not talking quantum physics here.

Kit Baum

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