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Re: Suggestion to maintainers of GFDL docs

* Brian T. Sniffen (bts@alum.mit.edu) wrote:
> iain d broadfoot <ibroadfo@cis.strath.ac.uk> writes:
> >> > and possibly avoid referring directly to MSWord as well - a reference to
> >> > 'binary, closed file formats' would probably do the same job.
> >> 
> >> Yes, that might be better.  I'd avoid the words "closed" and "binary",
> >> as MS is already trying to redefine both.  Perhaps "formats of
> >> proprietary word processing programs".
> >
> > hmmm, even that might not cover enough - we wouldn't want OOo Write
> > format to be treated as Source Code presumably.
> Actually, if I can get free software which can read it and parse it
> into something useful to me, I'm content with that.  I'd prefer more,
> but requiring that it's easily editable using free software is enough.

that's true - this is the kind of thing that'd be more case-by-case

> > perhaps it should be chopped back further, to say that the Source must
> > always be directly editable as text rather than requiring to be parsed
> > _before_ editing - that would cover plaintext, LaTeX, HTML etc and block
> > PDF, PS MS, OOo, Abi, etc etc etc.
> >
> > 'Distribution in any format that requires parsing to be editable should
> > be considered Object Code' or similar?
> >
> > maybe limit the allowed parsing to `cat $FILENAME`... :D
> But I actually do write documents in raw PostScript, by hand.  It's
> quite readable, well-commented code, too.  The requirement that

hey, you mentioned Postscript first... :p

> "source" be plain text seems... short-sighted.  A month after that
> goes into recommended text, someone *will* show up here with an
> illuminated manuscript they want to distribute, and the calligraphy's
> important... oh, there you go: ideally, this text should work for
> non-English text, and for documents which have embedded graphics.
> "Plain text" really doesn't satisfy either of those.

plain text would simply mean that i can type `vim something`, and have
the text appear in front of me. presumably, those strange foreign chaps
already have their systems set up to handle those strange foreign chars.

i'm never entirely convinced of the need for inline images, but i can
certainly see that they _would_ be used if available.

> Since this isn't actually license text, but merely accompanying
> clarification, it's probably OK to be sloppy and request plain text,
> or "must be editable with free software."

but that allows MSWord docs, since i can edit them with Abiword, OOo

maybe request a plain text version alongside any other formats? or

"must be editable with free software and must be saved in a Free format?"


wh33, y1p33 3tc.

"If sharing a thing in no way diminishes it, it is not rightly owned if it is
not shared." -St. Augustine

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