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Re: Manual Pages

From: B. Smith-Mannschott <benpsm_at_gmail.com>
Date: 2007-01-24 16:32:32 CET

On 1/24/07, Jeff Smith <jsmith@robotronics.com> wrote:
> First of all, you said "someone *already* wrote such manual pages",
> but then you point to HTML pages. Do you not understand the
> difference between "man" and "HTML"?

Do you not understand the difference between HTML, and the and
DocBookXML sources it was generated from? (I'm afraid you set
yourself up for that retort.)

It seems a sprinkling of XSLT could transform the contents of
ch-reference.xml to a DocBook refentry [1], which could then be fed to
manpage.xsl [2] to produce a man page.

[1] http://www.docbook.org/tdg/en/html/refentry.html
[2] http://www.methods.co.nz/asciidoc/chunked/ar01s28.html

just sayin'


> Further, you will find that for 10 years authors have been
> deprecating their `man` pages and generating more manageable formats,
> like `info`.

That may be so, but I still am mildly annoyed every time I type man
FOO and get a "go use info" or worse, a URL. I'm at the command line
or in EMACS a lot. Is it so wrong to want a concise reference within
easy convenient reach? (Old habits die hard. I guess my virtual beard
is showing.)

In the particular case of svn, I do find myself reflexively typeing
'man svn' only to my own irritation. It's not such a problem though
because "svn help" is detailed enough to be an adequate substitute in
most cases.

// Ben

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Received on Wed Jan 24 16:33:12 2007

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