Re: Next approach: Documentation Policy
Christian Schwarz wrote:
> No, I talked about the "*.info" files. Someone else said here, some time
> ago, that the intention of a Linux distribution is to provide the people
> with "compiled files", not with the source that everyone has to compile.
> Some people have slow computers, little memory, etc. and they surely don't
> want to compile these files themselves all the time (whenever a package is
> installed, upgraded, etc.).
So why we are still distributing the man sources instead of pre-formatted
Please note that makeinfo (the info compiler) is much faster than groff (the
And you did not answer my other concerns about not distributing documents
in source format. I summarize them and add a few points:
- The speed of compiling sources is reasonable enough in most cases.
- On demand compiling works for man, it should work for info too.
- On-the-fly conversion to html is good enough in many cases.
- Makeinfo is fast, groff is slow.
- Users may want to print the documents. They need the source for that.
- Users may want to automatically process the sources or convert them
to a non-standard format.
- Texinfo files are nicer when viewed with the texi2html converter.
Did you read my alternative proposal? I think it issues important points
not covered in the present one, like treatment of binary documents, fallthrough
methods for man and info when not installed and (IMHO) a nice and consistent
solution to the problem of when to include multiple formats in a package.
Even if you don't agree with everything I still think you should consider
some parts of it.
One problem I see with the texi2html program is that it depends on Perl, which
makes it very slow in an old computer. I was trying to modify it to do
on-the-fly conversion but I have switched to makeinfo, which is very fast
even in my old 386. I am adapting makeinfo to produce on-the-fly html output
instead of info output.
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