I am new to software development and my background is not in computer science. I am writing an article about a software package I developed with some collaborators and I was wondering about the proper way to format the appearance of certain text in the body of the article. The article is being written in latex. It is not technical documentation, just the proceedings from a conference.

My understanding is that the package should be written in typewriter text font:

We developed the \texttt{Package Name} package to solve a problem

The issue I have is the correct formatting for functions. Should we include parentheses or not when discussing functions in the body of the text?

Should I write the form without parentheses:

A useful function is \texttt{ function1 } which performs a task.

or should I write the form with parentheses:

A useful function is \texttt{ function1() } which performs a task ?

Unfortunately my collaborators are unable to assist me right now and I have heard conflicting arguments from different graduate students and I have not been able to find a journal article which discusses a function in the body of a text.

I am not requesting information about the format of code or output, just the proper way to write about a function in the body of the text (i.e. inside a paragraph).

Thank you for looking at my post.

  • Have you tried asking the conference organizers?
    – ekl
    Nov 11 '19 at 19:38

First, as I argued in this answer, I suggest you to not use directly the command \texttt but to define a new command reflecting its purpose.

About your specific question, a common way is as follows:

  1. Don't put parentheses if you are declaring the existence of a certain function or making a reference to it (example from the Matlab documentation):

The inv function and the expression A^-1 both compute the matrix inverse.

  1. Use the parentheses with the input argument list when you want to describe the details of the function and its calling syntax:

The function max(a,b) finds the maximum between the variables a and b.

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