helpr v0.2.0

Help for R.

Better html documentation for R



Helpr is an R package that betters friendly HTML documentation. With links to other packages, function aliases, and function sources, finding information is a click away. Using the comprehensive search bar, searching across all R packages is quick and effortless.

The heart of helpr is hosted locally. No internet is required to display all of the documentation, while functionality of the search bar, RSS feed, and comment system requires an internet connection.

The development of helpr was made possible with generous support from Revolution Analytics.

Main Features

  • Home Screen

    • List of all packages loaded / installed
    • Links to all R Manuals
    • Allows you to update out-of-date packages
  • Package Page

    • Every help page link is split into groups
    • Links to package vignettes and demos
    • List of general information: Authors, Suggests, Depends, Reverse Dependencies, and CRAN info
    • Change log of the latest version
    • Disqus comment system
  • Topic Page

    • Display of Description, Usage, Arguments, Details, Value, and Source
    • Usage links to source of each main function
    • List of Authors and “See Also”
    • Examples with full syntax highlighting and able to embed non-interactive example output in browser
    • List of top functions used in the examples
    • Disqus comment system
  • Source Page

    • Function description
    • Full syntax highlighting
    • List of top functions used in the source
    • Disqus comment system
  • Demo Page

    • Demo description
    • Links to other demos within the same package
    • List of top functions used in the demo
    • Full syntax highlighting and able to embed non-interactive demo output in browser


To install helpr, you first need to install some packages:

  • from CRAN: install.packages( c("stringr", "digest", "mutatr", "brew", "testthat") )
  • from github:

Running helpr

Running from an installed package:


Running the development version:

# With working directory set to the helpr package directory


Follow the tutorial to get a feel how it works.

(Developers) To install solr, you first need to install brew

  • install brew: ruby -e "$(curl -fsS"
  • install solr with brew: brew install solr

  • Add/replace the two files in solr-conf to solr's example/solr/conf folder

  • Execute the command java -jar start.jar in the /example solr directory to start the server
    • my solr is installed at /usr/local/Cellar/solr/1.4.0/
  • To add/update files, execute one of the index commands from R

    index_topic(package, topic) index_package(package) index_all()

Design inspiration

Functions in helpr

Name Description
base_html_path Base html path needed to load a website.
add_package_link_to_string Add package link to a string.
code_info Find functions, counts, and links of given R text.
check_for_package Check to see if a package exists.
add_function_links_into_parsed Add funciton link. Add the function link to the preparsed R code
demo_src_file Demo source file.
author_email Author Email Parsing parse the author email
body_text Extract source code of a function.
demo_info Demo information.
dataframe_has_rows Determines whether or not the dataframe has rows.
demo_src Demo source.
eval_tag_output Tag the output text with correct css class
exec_pkg_demo Evaluate demo in the R console.
eval_on_global Eval text using the global environment. Using memoise to speedup reproducability.
function_help_path Return the help path of a function.
function_and_link Return the package functions and links of a given text.
first_item_pos Find the first item position.
evaluate_text Evaluate text and return the corresponding text output and source.
function_news Function news.
function_levels Function levels. go through the function text to find the function level (depth) of each function
helpr_home Helpr Home.
helpr_function Render all the information to display a topic source page.
group_int_arr Group items into similar sections.
get_solr_query_result Solr query. Retrieve a solr query
has_text Determines whether or not the item has text.
get_servr_query_result Solr query. Retrieve a solr query
get_manuals Locate all R manuals on the local computer.
helpr_demo helpr demo information.
functions_used Functions used in the string of functions.
get_function_history List all recently called functions.
helpr_render_json Render JSON
helpr_replay Replay a list of evaluated results, just like you'd run them in a R terminal.
helpr_package Package information.
helpr Start helpr.
highlight Highlight R text. Highlights R text to include links to all functions and make it easier to read
helpr_path Helpr Path: Where's my help at?
i_can_has_internetz Check to see if solr is running. A check to see if solr is running called and memoised at the start of helpr()
index_all Index all packages. Index all packages into solr
helpr_solr_search Helpr Search.
helpr_topic Helpr home.
list_to_double_list Make a list into a nested list. this is to be done to easily use sapply and keep the name of the item
list_to_xml Turn a list into a solr doc. turn a list into a solr doc
is_section Determines whether or not tag is a section
last_item_pos Find the last Item position.
index_topic Index topic. Index a topic into solr
index_package Index package. Index a whole package into solr
install_packages Install packages. update a vector of packages
installed_packages Installed packages.
last_ten_functions List last ten unique functions called from the command line.
list_tags List tags list all the tags within a object
name_rd Name R documentation.
old_package_names Out of date packages.
parse_help Parse help file. Function to turn a help topic into a convenient format.
make_add_xml Make it so the xml is an 'add'. make it so the xml is an 'add' to be commited to solr
parse_item_list Parse a group of "\item" into a table with a bold item and reconstructed description.
load_html Load an html page from the console.
local_mode Local Mode
package_description Package description
package_and_topic_from_url Pkg and topic from URL. Retrieve the pkg and topic from the URL
make_field Make a xml field. make a field for a solr document
print.help_files_with_topic Route to the topics with multiple files to correct page.
pkg_help_path Package help path.
print.packageInfo Route to the package page
rp Router Info
pkg_news Package news.
send_system_command Send system command to Solr. Send a system command to Solr to add / update files to Solr
safely_order_funcs Order functions safely by name.
servr_base_url Solr base URL.
solr_has_topic_in_example Solr Topics in Example
pkg_author_and_maintainers Parse authors and maintainer.
pkg_rddb_path Documentation database path.
reconstruct Recursively reconstruct R documentation.
pkg_topic Package topic R documentation.
pkg_demos List all demos in a package.
servr_combine_param Combine Solr parameters.
render_snippet Render HTML Snippet.
solr_delete_package Deletes everything that belongs to a package in solr.
servr_has_topic_in_example Solr Topics in Example
parse_tabular Parse a Tabular Section Parse a tabular section to include the text alignments
solr_example_field Example query field.
parse_text Parse Text wrapper to parser's parser(text = text)
pkg_vigs List all package vignettes.
pluralize Pluralize pluralize a string with either the default 's' according to the boolean statement
put_file PUT a file to the Solr server.
put_string PUT a string to the Solr server.
tag Tag an item
simple_tags All tags that can be parsed in a simple way.
servr_similar Similar pages. Find related pages and return info in a data.frame
ten_functions Both the top ten most called and last ten functions.
parse_usage Parse usage. Parse the topic usage to add links to functions
pkg_and_topic_from_help_url Retrieve the package and the topic from a url that contains both.
read_rds Read RDS file
strip_html Strip HTML strip the HTML from a text string
solr_combine_param Combine Solr parameters.
read_url Read URL. Retrieve the text from a URL
solr_base_url Solr base URL.
top_ten_functions List top 10 most frequently called functions.
solr_query_example_field Example query.
strong Strong HTML
topic_is_internal Internal topic function.
pkg_topics_index Package topics alias to file index.
pkg_topics_alias Topic title and aliases by package. return information on the package, datasets, internal, and datasets
save_xml Save page info. Save page info into xml for solr
solr_topic_fields Topic fields.
search_query_path Search query path. return a html path for a search
send_commit_command Send commit command to Solr Send a commit command to Solr to finalized any submissions
save_picture Save a picture into the temp directory.
usage_functions Find all usage functions.
solr_topic Make Helpr topic into xml for solr.
urlJSON_to_list URL with JSON result to list.
pkg_version Package version from the rd file
parse_items Parse a list containing "\item" tags.
parse_pkg_desc_item Ensure package version is properly displayed (if not already in a nice format).
solr_query_topic_fields Topic query.
update_packs Update all packages that are old and currently loaded or installed.
solr_similar Similar pages. Find related pages and return info in a data.frame
pkg_topics_rd Package topics file documentation.
untag Untag an item
tag_simple tag a simple item tag an item that is contained in the simple tags list
tag_link link to another topic
usage_methods Usage methods. find all methods within a usage
No Results!


Type Package
License GPL-2
LazyData true
Collate 'changelog.r' 'demo.r' 'evaluate.r' 'functions.r' 'history.r' 'index.r' 'local.r' 'package.r' 'packages.r' 'parse-rd.r' 'pictures.r' 'render.r' 'route.r' 'server_com.r' 'solr-com.r' 'solr-query.r' 'solr-save.r' 'solr.r' 'topic.r'

Include our badge in your README