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Re: Should our documentation be free? (Was Re: Inconsistencies in our approach)

First off, sorry for starting off an old discussion. I've been away
for the past two weeks. [If any one cares, there are pictures
available on my website.]

On Wed, 06 Aug 2003, Sergey V. Spiridonov wrote:
> So, if you find a definition which makes no difference between
> software and documentation, please send it on this list.
> There is a difference, even if someone doesn't want to see it.

There clearly is a difference, otherwise we wouldn't need two words
for the concept.

However, you still have not brought forward a definition that
adequately draws a bright line to distinguish between software and
documentation. That is, at what point does software stop being
software and become documentation, and vice versa?

Without such a definition, people who hold that documentation should
be treated differently from software can't easily formulate the extra
restrictions that documentation can impose that are unexceptable for
software to impose.

If you read the archives, there have been numerous examples of cases
where the documentation itself actually becomes a pice of software. In
some of my programs, the documentation is so tightly coupled with the
software (POD, (perldoc perlpod for those not familiar with perl
documentation)) that it exists in the very same file.

Don Armstrong

"There are two major products that come out of Berkeley: LSD and UNIX.
We don't believe this to be a coincidence."
 -- Jeremy S. Anderson


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