# Phoenix Docstrings Guidelines¶

This document gives a brief introduction about the current docstrings standards in the Phoenix project. Most of the documentation in the Phoenix core is automatically generated by parsing the wxWidgets XML docs; however, Phoenix has its own pure-Python functions and classes in at least two places:

• Core Library: examples include wx.CallLater and wx.date2pydate, which require manual input of the documentation strings. This is achieved by editing the source Python files located in the etg folder in the Phoenix directory tree;

• wx.lib: the whole of wx.lib (and its sub-folders) is made up of pure-Python modules, often representing owner-drawn widgets which are not available as wrapped modules. Again, this requires manual editing of the source Python files.

This document is a starting point in setting some reasonable standards on how the pure-Python docstrings may be edited and improved to make the overall appearance of the Phoenix documentation consistent and pleasant.

## Info Field Lists¶

Info Field Lists refer to the various options available while documenting a method or a function, and in particular its parameters, keywords, return type and possibly raised Python Exceptions.

Inside Python object description directives, reST field lists with these fields are recognized and formatted nicely:

• param, parameter, arg, argument, key, keyword: Description of a parameter.

• type: Type of a parameter.

• raises, raise, except, exception: That (and when) a specific exception is raised.

• var, ivar, cvar: Description of a variable.

• returns, return: Description of the return value.

• rtype: Return type.

The field names must consist of one of these keywords and an argument (except for returns and rtype, which do not need an argument). This is best explained by an example:

.. method:: Set3StateValue(self, state):

Sets the checkbox item to the given state.

:param state: can be one of: wx.CHK_UNCHECKED (check is
off), wx.CHK_CHECKED (check is on) or
wx.CHK_UNDETERMINED (check is mixed).
:type state: integer

:returns: True if the value was successfully set, False
otherwise.
:rtype: bool

:raise: Exception when the item is not a 3-state checkbox item.


This will render like this:

### Methods¶

Set3StateValue(self, state):

Sets the checkbox item to the given state.

Parameters

state (integer) – can be one of: wx.CHK_UNCHECKED (check is off), wx.CHK_CHECKED (check is on) or wx.CHK_UNDETERMINED (check is mixed).

Returns

True if the value was successfully set, False otherwise.

Return type

bool

Raise

Exception when the item is not a 3-state checkbox item.

It is also possible to combine parameter type and description, if the type is a single word, like this:

:param integer state: can be one of: wx.CHK_UNCHECKED (check
is off), wx.CHK_CHECKED (check is on) or
wx.CHK_UNDETERMINED (check is mixed).


In general, the standards for the :param field are the following:

1. Do not use the @param construct, as I am not sure Sphinx and docutils understand it;

2. Always try and define the parameter type: if the parameter is another Phoenix class, you can simply write this:

:param Point pt: the mouse pointer location.


Or, alternatively:

:param pt: the mouse pointer location.
:type pt: Point


Similarly, for the :return: and :rtype: field, you may consider doing the following:

1. Try and put double-backticks on words like True, False, None and the various Phoenix constants (i.e., wx.TR_DEFAULT_STYLE);

2. If you can’t guess what a method function returns, just leave the :returns: and :rtype: fields blank.

Admonitions are specially marked “topics” that can appear anywhere an ordinary body element can. They contain arbitrary body elements. Typically, an admonition is rendered as an offset block in a document, sometimes outlined or shaded, with a title matching the admonition type. For example:

.. warning:: I am a warning.


Will render as:

Warning

I am a warning.

Currently, the sphinx_generator tool recognizes the following admonitions:

1. .. note:: or :note: : simple annotations to make a particular comment/sentence stand out against the rest of the documentation strings for a particular class, method or function;

2. .. warning:: : this admonition normally indicates a problem or a severe limitation of a method, class or function. In the Phoenix world, this may also indicate that a particular widget is not supported under one or more platforms;

3. .. wxdeprecated:: : used to mark deprecated methods, classes or functions. Please avoid using .. deprecated. ;

4. .. availability:: : normally employed to make the user understand on which platform(s) a particular functionality is supported/available;

5. .. seealso:: or :see: : added primarily to facilitate the browsing of the docs, this admonition should be employed every time you think a user may be interested in seeing a related/similar method or a function providing an alternative implementation;

6. .. todo:: : used to mark incomplete methods/functions, or simply as a remainder for the user and the developer that some more functionality needs to be added.

You can put pretty much anything inside an admonition section, as long as it is properly indented. The recommendation is to implement it like this:

.. note::

The class :ref:wx.TreeCtrl can be used to display a tree, with these notes:

- The note contains all indented body elements
following.
- It includes this bullet list.


Which will render as follows:

Note

The class wx.TreeCtrl can be used to display a tree, with these notes:

• The note contains all indented body elements following.

• It includes this bullet list.

In addition to the aforementioned admonitions, you can also use the default Sphinx directives like .. versionadded:: and .. versionchanged::, to highlight the fact that some method, function or class has been added/modified starting with a particular Phoenix version.

## Contributing Samples¶

If you wish to contribute a (short) sample to be included in the documentation, please follow these conventions:

1. Name the snippet of code like wxmodule.classname.methodname.INTEGER.py, i.e. if you wish to contribute 2 snippets about the wx.CheckBox.SetValue method, please name your snippet files like this:

• wx.CheckBox.SetValue.1.py

• wx.CheckBox.SetValue.2.py

2. At the very top of the snippet file (on the first line), put your name, or your alias, or anything you use as internet name preceded by a double-hash, i.e.:

##Andrea Gavana

So that your source code looks more or less like this:

##Chris Barker
#!/usr/bin/env python
"""
A simple test of the GridBagSizer
http://wiki.wxpython.org/index.cgi/WriteItYourself
"""

# Whatever code here...
def SendSizeEvent(self):


This snippet will end up in the snippets contrib folder, to differentiate it from the snippets automatically generated when parsing the wxWidgets C++ XML documentation.

Please keep the snippets as short as possible: they don’t need to be fully-runnable and self contained applications, they are simply meant to show a particular/clever/unusual way of using a method, a class or a function.

Please do submit the sample snippets to the wxWidgets/Phoenix Github repository as PR (Pull Request). The snippets should be placed in the source tree in this folder:

Phoenix/docs/sphinx/rest_substitutions/snippets/python/contrib

## Contributing Screenshots¶

Currently Phoenix is relatively short of widgets screenshots, especially on Linux/Mac platforms.

If you wish to contribute a screenshot of a widget to be included in the documentation, please follow these conventions:

Please submit the screenshots to the wxWidgets/Phoenix Github repository as a PR (Pull Request). The screenshots should be placed in the source tree in this folder:

Phoenix/trunk/docs/sphinx/_static/images/widgets/fullsize

Please make sure to put your images in the appropriate sub-folder, depending on the platform you chose to take the screenshots on.