[Numpy-discussion] numpy.var and numpy.std

Travis Oliphant oliphant.travis at ieee.org
Thu Jul 20 13:09:29 CDT 2006

Tom Denniston wrote:
> Are these functions supposed to compute variance and standard
> deviation?  They don't have docstrings and I can't find anything about
> them in Travis' manual.
I just wanted to advertise the fact that there are two utility functions 
in NumPy that can come in handy for people wanting to add docstrings to 
built-in types.

These utility functions by-pass the need to fiddle with doc-strings in 
C-code (which can be a pain) and re-compile every time a doc-string is 

These are meant to be run once....

They are:

add_docstring(obj, string)

Add a string as the docstring of obj.  A wide-variety of builtin types 
are understood.  If it doesn't know how to add it, you get a TypeError.  
If the object already has a doc-string you get a RuntimeError. 

add_newdoc(place, obj, doc)

This is a wrapper around docstring to make it easier to add docs to many 
attributes of an object which is stored in place.  It never fails.

place and obj are both strings
doc is a string, list, or tuple

place is the module name
obj is the object in that module

If doc is a string  add it to place.obj

If doc is a tuple it is (attr, doc)  ---> the first element is the 
attribute of obj and the second is the docstring.

If doc is a list it is [(attr1, doc1), (attr2, doc2), ...]  --> the 
elements of the list are all tuples to add docstrings to many attributes 
of an object.


is a place where docstrings can be added.


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