[cfe-dev] GSoD: analyzer checker docs?

Artem Dergachev via cfe-dev cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org
Fri Apr 19 19:45:47 PDT 2019

I don't fully understand this either, but it's pretty hard to imagine 
that somebody from outside would be able to quickly understand how 
Static Analyzer works and uses this understanding solely for describing 
how it works. Even a GSoC student doesn't necessarily gather enough 
understanding throughout a summer of practical work on the analyzer to 
write such docs. On the other hand, about the docs that are scattered 
around - it's bad that they're scattered around, but they themselves 
aren't that bad (well, at least, i arrogantly believe they aren't that 
bad), just hard to find. I mean, they don't look like something that 
somebody should write for us; we'll probably do a better job writing 
in-depth docs because we're writing it for ourselves and we know what we 

On 4/19/19 6:58 PM, Devin Coughlin wrote:
> I think we should try to focus the Google Summer of Documentation 
> project on documenting aspects of the analyzer that would benefit our 
> users. There are a lot more of them than there are of us analyzer 
> developers!
> One area that would be great to improve on is describing for our 
> important checkers:
> * What bugs does the checker find?
> * Why are the bugs important?
> * How should the bugs be fixed?
> * How should false positives be suppressed?
> The GSoD project is an amazing resource — we should take advantage of 
> it to improve our users’ experience of the analyzer.
> Devin
>> On Apr 19, 2019, at 4:37 PM, Kristóf Umann <dkszelethus at gmail.com 
>> <mailto:dkszelethus at gmail.com>> wrote:
>> Sounds like the thing we always needed in my opinion! The analyzer 
>> could really use some better docs in certain areas -- speaking from 
>> personal experience, I always thought that I just need more time to 
>> learning about the codebase before being able to understand patches 
>> related to, for example, liveness analysis. It wasn't until I 
>> attended Gábor Horváth's advanced compilers lectures at my 
>> university, when I understood that that is in fact something that 
>> exists in the literature, and the thing that we have in the analyzer 
>> is "merely" an implementation of it. I really liked what he said 
>> during the Birds of a Feather meeting on EuroLLVM, is that we do have 
>> many things documented, but it's scattered all over the place in 
>> youtube videos, cfe-dev mails, patch review discussions, bugzilla 
>> reports (especially before 2012) and the like. If under GSoD we could 
>> get this sorted out, get rid of most of HTML files we have on 
>> https://clang-analyzer.llvm.org/, and have an easy-to-navigate, 
>> easy-to-extend documentation for the long term, it would be far more 
>> inviting for newcomers as well. I might be biased, but the Clang 
>> Static Analyzer is very cool project, and I think if we made the 
>> transition from writing your first checker to making changes in the 
>> actual infrastructure a little easier, we would have a a lot easier 
>> time building a community around it.
>> Couple thoughts of mine, I haven't read through the entire GSoD 
>> procedure thought.
>> On Sat, 20 Apr 2019 at 03:12, Artem Dergachev <noqnoqneo at gmail.com 
>> <mailto:noqnoqneo at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>     Tanya made this call for Google thing of Docs, which is like
>>     summer of
>>     code just for docs
>>     (http://lists.llvm.org/pipermail/cfe-dev/2019-April/062121.html).
>>     There's been a lot of work on checker docs in the Analyzer
>>     recently. Do
>>     we want to take this opportunity?
>>     Like, if it gives us a nice, stylish, easy-to-understand, on-point
>>     description of what the checker thinks the user's code is doing
>>     and how
>>     bad does it think it is, it might be pretty neat.

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