Using the On-line Help System

Quintus Prolog provides an on-line help system, which allows on-line access to this manual. The best ways to access the on-line manual are via QUI or Emacs, but it can also be accessed from the TTY interface. Type manual. at the main Prolog prompt to access the on-line help system as shown below.

     | ?- manual.

The system then displays the following menu:

     File:,  Node: Top,  Next: int,  Prev: (dir),  Up: (dir)
     Quintus Prolog
     * Menu:
     * {manual(int)}                         Introduction
     * {manual(bas)}                         User's Guide
     * {manual(qui)}                         The Quintus User Interface
     * {manual(ema)}                         The Emacs Interface
     * {manual(vb)}                          The Visual Basic Interface
     * {manual(dbg)}                         The Debugger
     * {manual(glo)}                         Glossary
     * {manual(ref)}                         The Prolog Language
     * {manual(sap)}                         Creating Executables
     * {manual(fli)}                         Foreign Language Interface
     * {manual(ipc)}                         Inter-Process Communication
     * {manual(lib)}                         Library
     * {manual(str)}                         The Structs Package
     * {manual(obj)}                         The Objects Package
     * {manual(pbn)}                         The PrologBeans Package
     * {manual(pxl)}                         The ProXL Package
     * {manual(pxt)}                         The ProXT Package
     * {manual(mpg)}                         Prolog Reference pages
     * {manual(cfu)}                         C Reference Pages
     * {manual(too)}                         Command Reference Pages
     * {manual(pindex)}                      Predicate Index
* {manual(kindex)}                      Keystroke Index
     * {manual(bindex)}                      Book Index
        This manual documents Quintus Prolog Release December 2003.
        Prolog is a simple but powerful programming language developed at the
     University of Marseille, as a practical tool for programming in logic.
     From a user's point of view the major attraction of the language is
     ease of programming.  Clear, readable, concise programs can be written
     quickly with few errors.

To see the table of contents for the Quintus User Interface, type

     | ?- manual(qui).

The table of contents of the QUI part will then be shown as another menu. You can then choose a chapter/section in that part. For example, the second entry in the QUI menu is:

     * {manual(qui-mai)}                     QUI Main Window

So, to find out about the main window of the QUI you would type:

     | ?- manual(qui-mai).

In response, the system displays the appropriate section of the manual on the screen. You can continue typing goals of this form until you reach a file of text that does not begin with a menu.

You can control the way that manual files are written to the screen by setting your environment variable PAGER to the name of a program to be used to display a file. If PAGER is not set the default is more(1).

If you wish to save an on-line manual section into a file it can be done like this:

     | ?- tell('qui-mai.manual'), manual(qui-mai), told.

To request information about a specific topic, type help(Topic). at the main Prolog prompt, where Topic represents the topic you want information about. The system displays a menu generated by scanning the index of the manual for all entries containing the substring formed by Topic.

For example, you might type

     | ?- help(debug).

if you are interested in learning about using the debugger. In response to this, the system will display a menu indicating all the parts of the manual whose index entries contain the substring debug. Note that you can abbreviate topics; if you type

     | ?- help(deb).

you will get a menu referring to all topics containing with the substring deb. Thus, the more you abbreviate, the larger the menu you are likely to get. If the menu would only have one entry it is not displayed -- that entry is selected automatically.