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Parse function arguments


Aslak Grinsted


16 May 2003 (Updated )

A useful tool for parsing function arguments like 'cellspacing',6,'monkey',1

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Helper function for parsing varargin. Makes it easy to write functions that take arguments like this: subaxis(4,2,1,'spacing',0,'marginleft',.1,'H','pt',.1)
  * ArgStruct is the structure full of named arguments with default values.
  * Flagtype params is params that don't require a value. (the value will be set to 1 if it is present)
  * Aliases can be used to map one argument-name to several argstruct fields
  example usage:
  function parseargtest(varargin)
  %define the acceptable named arguments and assign default values
  Args=struct('Holdaxis',0, ...
         'SpacingVertical',0.05,'SpacingHorizontal',0.05, ...
         'PaddingLeft',0,'PaddingRight',0,'PaddingTop',0,'PaddingBottom',0, ...
         'MarginLeft',.1,'MarginRight',.1,'MarginTop',.1,'MarginBottom',.1, ...
  %The capital letters define abrreviations.
  % Eg. parseargtest('spacingvertical',0) is equivalent to parseargtest('sv',0)
  Args=parseArgs(varargin,Args, ... % fill the arg-struct with values entered by the user
            {'Holdaxis'}, ... %this argument has no value (flag-type)
            {'Spacing' {'sh','sv'}; 'Padding' {'pl','pr','pt','pb'}; 'Margin' {'ml','mr','mt','mb'}});


This file inspired Parseargs: Simplifies Input Processing For Functions With Multiple Options and Easyparse.

MATLAB release MATLAB 6.0 (R12)
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Comments and Ratings (9)
15 Jan 2015 ABID


If we want to use single ylable instead of two or three, how can we do this???

Comment only
25 Oct 2012 Amir


Excellent, nice & elegant. Exactly what I needed!

27 Mar 2007 JB Vincent

Good but it seems impossible to use more than one flag-type argument (an argument with no value).

26 Nov 2006 Chris BL

Nice job. Thanks!
I was immediately stopped by a bug:
If I want some parameters to be able to receive an empty value, ie [], your script fails. (It concludes that the parameter is numeric or something).

30 Aug 2006 Patrik Eschle

Saved me a day of headache, thanks!

17 Aug 2006 Ulrik Ulrik

very nice, just what I needed

27 Jan 2005 Philippe Arrchambault

Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks!

27 Oct 2004 Aslak Grinsted

Thanks. However, there is a problem with the above fix. It will cause you to specify a value for flagparams. Flagparams are meant to be default false, but then true if you set it. F.x. You could call:

which would set argstruct.hold=true... In the newest version it is optional if you want to specify a value for flag params. e.g. you could call:
to set hold to false.

Comment only
24 Aug 2004 Michael Kadour

Problem with flagparams - fixed with minor modification to line 69:

Fnames{i,4}=isempty(strmatch(Fnames{i,1},FlagTypeParams)); %Does this parameter have a value? (e.g. not flagtype)

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