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The Mathematica Toolbox: Enhanced Error Messages

Todd Gayley
Organization: Wolfram Research, Inc.
Department: Kernel Technology
Journal / Anthology

The Mathematica Journal
Year: 1993
Volume: 3
Issue: 4
Page range: 31-34

ErrorHelp.m provides detailed, context-specific help for about a dozen of the most common and/or confusing errors in Mathematica. When an error for which ErrorHelp is available occurs, the message

ErrorHelp::available: For more information about the above error, type ErrorHelp[].

appears. The user then types ErrorHelp[] to see a discussion of that particular error and how to fix it. The discussion is tailored to the specific input that generated the error.

Examples of the types of errors that are explained are: incorrectly specified package names; "shadow" errors caused by reading in a package after you try to use one of its symbols; attempts to plot a function that does not evaluate to a number; mistakenly tagging a rule to a protected system symbol, as in x + y = 2; and several others.

This article is a description of the ErrorHelp package. Full documentation is included in the package file itself.

*Wolfram Technology > Front End > Assertions, Warnings, and Errors
*Wolfram Technology > Programming > Error Messages

shadow errors, protected system symbol