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Re: Debian GNU/Linux Reference Card under construction

On Fri, Apr 23, 2004 at 09:45:16AM +0800, Isaac To wrote:
> >>>>> "Colin" == Colin Watson <cjwatson@debian.org> writes:
>     Colin> FWIW, this isn't true: man -k;
> info --apropos

That doesn't search man pages; it searches info pages. Not the same
thing at all, and not at all as useful.

>     Colin> man uses your preferred pager while info has its own built-in
>     Colin> (and fairly sucky) one;
> The price to pay is that it has no navigation support at all in man: no
> cross reference, no parent, and no index.

There's w3mman if you're crazy :-)

And you aren't *supposed* to need an index for man pages, beyond what
apropos gives you, nor a parent node. The whole point is that they're
concise reference material. Man pages are a distinct documentation
format with a distinct purpose.

> If you don't like Emacs-style keys in info, there is --vi-keys.

Binary toggles aren't nearly as flexible as being able to swap in your
own pager.

>     Colin> man can format man pages to PostScript etc.;
> TexInfo files can be formatted to PostScript using just plain TeX, just like
> man files can be formatted to PostScript using Groff.  Of course, formated
> .info cannot be formatted to PostScript, just like catman files cannot be
> formatted to PostScript.

I wasn't arguing about the respective source formats. You said that the
info client can replace man. It can't.

>     Colin> I don't see a way to specify a manual section to info;
> Try "info 'time(2)'".  (Can it be any more intuitive than that?)

It could be documented :-)

Actually, the quoting is suboptimal, which is why man has always done it
with 'man 2 time'.

>     Colin> does info *really* handle non-ASCII encodings better than man
>     Colin> currently does?; and so on.
> For this I don't know, though.  If this is a problem it should really be
> fixed.

It's no small project.


Colin Watson                                  [cjwatson@flatline.org.uk]

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