# A note on Help with Shyft¶

Shyft is designed to make use of standard help functionality in Python. You are able to access help functionality using tab completion or help(). The “?” or “??” standards in IPython work, but seem at times to be limited with respect to some of the Boost-Python documentation. Therefore, we encourage you to please use help.

## Is the help text unfamiliar?¶

Look at the following examples. Note that in some cases, the doc strings are generated directly from the C++ underlying code, so you will see full C++ call signatures. If you use help(shyft_object) and get something that is looks a bit overwhelming or unfamiliar, just realize that the methods are generally showing how to call a method and what it returns. If you see (object)arg1 or (object)self as a first argument to a method, that simply means the class itself is the first argument.

If you are not familiar with C++ one aspect to be aware of is Overloading. Due to this, when you print help() for a shyft.api function you may see multiple _init_ definitions (e.g. call structures). You’ll have to use logic to reason which is applicable to your case.

See for example:

help(region_model.set_state_collection)


Returns:

Help on method set_state_collection:

set_state_collection(...) method of  shyft.api.pt_gs_k._pt_gs_k.PTGSKModel instance
set_state_collection( (PTGSKModel)arg1, (int)catchment_id, (bool)on_or_off) -> None :
enable state collection for specified or all
cells note that this only works if the underlying
cell is configured to do state collection. This
is typically not the  case for cell-types that
are used during calibration/optimization


What this means is that method set_state_collection has a call signature as: set_state_collection( (PTGSKModel)arg1, (int)catchment_id, (bool)on_or_off) -> None This means, the method should be called with the first positional argument as the model, or self, so this is already there when you call it from region_model. The second positional argument should be an integer referring to the catchment_id (more on this later), and the third is a boolean indicating True or False. So to make use of this method you would call it like:

simulator.region_model.set_state_collection(1228, False)


And state collection would be turned off for catchment with catchment_id == 1228.

Another example coming from the api:

See for example:

help(shyft.api.Calendar)


Will have in the docstring:

Methods defined here:

__init__(...)
__init__( (object)arg1) -> None

__init__( (object)arg1, (int)tz_offset) -> None :
creates a calendar with constant tz-offset

Parameters
----------
tz_offset : int
seconds utc offset, 3600 gives UTC+01 zone

__init__( (object)arg1, (str)olson_tz_id) -> None :
create a Calendar from Olson timezone id, eg. 'Europe/Oslo'

Parameters
----------
olson_tz_id : str
Olson time-zone id, e.g. 'Europe/Oslo'


What this means is that the Class Calendar may be instantiated as: Calendar() returning an empty Calendar, as Calendar( tz_offset ) where tz_offset is a integer indicating the offset from the timezone, or as Calendar( 'Europe/Oslo') where the calendar will be ‘tied’ to the “Europe/Oslo” timezone (otherwise UTC).

Okay, so now you are ready to explore Shyft internals further! Remember, use help()!!