Custom help files?

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dalremnei
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Dec 10, 2020 11:32 am
Location: Scotland

Custom help files?

Post by dalremnei »

We all customise our off images, but since the help file is accessible from the calculator's file system and can be modified, it's possible to make custom help documents too, and load them by pressing F3. I've only experimented with this feature by converting a google docs document into a .txt file, replacing the help text with it and putting newlines after each sentence to avoid over 512 characters per line, which the help viewer seems unable to handle. It's an awkward solution but it works.

Earlier I attempted to make help documents with Word but it didn't work because it put in a bunch of extra formatting that the HTML renderer on the calculator cannot handle. It's quite hard for me to make custom help files right now because I need to edit the HTML in notepad++ and that's a really limited and difficult way to make webpages. If there's a simpler way to make DM42-compatible HTML documents, I'd be keen to know about it, because the first practical use of this feature I can think of is creating a Lojban cheat sheet with a list of grammar rules and particles for quick reference while I have a conversation open on my phone or am just writing something and don't want to get distracted by switching apps all the time. I think this would be fun to use.

I have changed the header of the DM42 help file to say "Property of dalremnei" and my phone number just in case that helps it be returned if lost or stolen.

How have you modified the standard help file, or have you created whole new html documents for viewing on your calculator? If so it'd be really cool to see them!
SwissMicros DM42, DM16L, HP 12c Platinum, CASIO fx-9750gii, fx-991ex classwiz, CA-53W-1ER, TEXET fx1500, TI nspire CX II-T
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deetee
Posts: 34
Joined: Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:01 am
Location: Vienna

Re: Custom help files?

Post by deetee »

The "Web-Browser" of the DM42 is very rudimentary and in best case compatible to HTML 2.0.
So many HTML>2.0-Tools make code which ist not understandable from the DM42.

But making HTML-documents at this level is relatively easy and can be done with any simple editor. I think it is an advantage to end lines with a (linux like) carriage return only and not with (the Windows like) carriage return + line feed.

In my post
viewtopic.php?f=17&t=2226&p=11664&hilit=deetee#p11664
I tried to do some experiments with the help file - at least I added some code regarding special characters of the DM42.
Maybe this helps you.

Regards
deetee
rprosperi
Posts: 1159
Joined: Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:48 pm
Location: New York

Re: Custom help files?

Post by rprosperi »

I'm glad folks are creating custom help files! :)

A lot of work went into extending the core help viewer system so users can create and share extended help files, so it's satisfying that folks are finding it useful. Please continue to expand your content and share it as examples for others.
--bob p

DM42: β00071 & 00282, DM41X: β00071 & 00656, DM10L: 071/100
Nigel (UK)
Posts: 67
Joined: Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:08 pm

Re: Custom help files?

Post by Nigel (UK) »

Here's the help file that I've created for my adaptation of the WP 34S calculator for the DM42 (it's a zip file as I can't upload it as html).
wp34s_help.zip
(8.68 KiB) Downloaded 12 times
I wrote it using Emacs on a linux system, along with a few macros to apply "button" or "lcd" backgrounds to text.

The biggest problem was the need to load it onto the calculator multiple times, to catch all the bugs! I've found that html between <!-- and --> isn't ignored by the browser; that &nbsp; is translated to a space, though not a non-breaking one; and that <table>...</table> sometimes doesn't work: on scrolling through the document, when the table is reached everything beyond a certain point goes blank (replacing <table> with <ul> fixed this).

The biggest help was the sdkdemo.html file supplied with the demo calculator. I had this open all the time - it shows clearly what can be done, and, in general, if something isn't in that file it probably won't work. The only extra information that would help would be a clear statement of the limits of the built-in browser - for example, does the limit of characters per line refer to displayed characters, or all html code? What exactly marks the start and end of a line in this sense?

Despite these (minor) complaints, it is great to have this facility available. Thanks for taking the trouble to provide it!

Nigel (UK)
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