Since Fedora contributors live around the world and don’t often have the opportunity to meet in person, it’s important to maintain up-to-date high quality documentation for all our projects. Our preferred documentation tool is Sphinx. In fact, this documentation is written using Sphinx!
A project’s documentation should at a minimum contain:
An introduction to the project
A user guide
A contributor guide
The easiest way to maintain up-to-date documentation is to include the majority of the documentation in the code itself. Sphinx includes several extensions to turn Python documentation into HTML pages.
Improving documentation is a great way to get involved in a project. When adding new documentation or cleaning up existing documentation, please follow the guidelines below. ======= Style
Sphinx supports three different documentation styles. By default, Sphinx expects ReStructuredText. However, it has included an extension to support the Google style and the NumPy style since version 1.3. The style of the documentation blocks is left up to the individual project, but it should document the choice and be consistent.
The project introduction should be easy to find - preferably it should be the documentation’s index page. It should provide an overview of the project and should be easy for a complete new-comer to understand.
=== User Guide
Have a clear user guide that covers most, if not all, features of the project as well as potential use cases. Keep in mind that your users may be non-technical as well as technical. Some users will want to use the project’s web interface, while others are interested in the API and the documentation should make it easy for both types of users to find the documentation for them.
=== Contributor Guide
Documenting how to start contributing makes it much easier for new contributors to get involved. This is a good place to cover the expectations about code style, documentation, tests, etc.
=== API Documentation
All APIs should be documented. Users should never have to consult the source code to use the project’s API.
Python API documentation is easily generated by using the autodoc extension. Following these steps will create rich HTML, PDF, EPUB, or man format documentation:
==== HTTP APIs
Many projects provide an HTTP-based API. Use sphinxcontrib-httpdomain to produce the HTTP interface documentation. This task is made significantly easier if the project using a web framework that sphinxcontrib-httpdomain supports, like Flask. In that case, all you need to do is add the sphinxcontrib-httpdomain ReStructuredText directives to the functions or classes that provide the Flask endpoints.
After that, all you need to do is use the
=== Release Notes and ChangeLog
The release notes (or the changelog) can be managed using towncrier. It can build a release notes files by assembling items that would be written in separate files by each pull request (or commit). This way, the different commits will not conflict by writing in the same changelog file, and a link to the issue, the pull request or the commit is automatically inserted.
In your project root, add a
Of course, replace
Then create a
============= Release Notes ============= .. towncrier release notes start
Then each commit can add a file in the
And where the
A preview of the release notes can be generated with