debug environment for NCL?

From: Sam McClatchie (NOAA Federal) <sam.mcclatchie_at_nyahnyahspammersnyahnyah>
Date: Fri Jun 14 2013 - 10:18:42 MDT


When working on R scripts, you can set a browser() command to stop
execution of a script at any point, so you can examine the contents of
the workspace. For example, I might want to test run a new line using
temporary variables loaded into the workspace up to the point that I
halted execution. Or I might want to check the dimensions or the
attributes of a particular variable that is giving me problems. This
provides a very useful debugging facility. Matlab has something similar.

Searching through the documentation and the maillist archives, I don't
see anything similar in NCL, but perhaps I just have not found it? I
know that I can locate errors using 'ncl -x filename.ncl' from the
command line, but this is not my problem. I know that I can also copy
code lines from my script into another interactive NCL session, but this
gets cumbersome when the script gets a bit longer. I am beginning to
suspect that the kind of debugging environment I am searching for is a
facility of the editor being used (I use emacs at present)? Is that the

Thanks for any comment,


Sam McClatchie,
Supervisory oceanographer, Fisheries oceanography
Southwest Fisheries Science Center, NOAA,
8901 La Jolla Shores Dr.
La Jolla, CA 92037-1509, U.S.A.
email <>
Office: 858 546 7083, Cellular:  858 752 8495
Research home page <>
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Received on Fri Jun 14 10:19:03 2013

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