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Re: [Groff] XML and groff as frontend

From: Greg 'groggy' Lehey
Subject: Re: [Groff] XML and groff as frontend
Date: Sun, 23 Oct 2005 16:04:45 +0300
User-agent: Mutt/

On Saturday, 22 October 2005 at 16:44:12 -0500, Alejandro Lpez-Valencia wrote:
> On 10/22/05, Zvezdan Petkovic wrote:
>> On Sat, Oct 22, 2005 at 03:47:19PM -0400, Larry Kollar wrote:
>>> I use structured FrameMaker at work to write documentation, and one of
>>> the easier ways I've found to get text into it is to paste it into
>>> Vim then pipe lines through scripts that wrap blocks of text in tags
>>> (lists,  sections, and so forth). I then import that into Frame. It
>>> works very well,  although the technique is probably specific to the
>>> writer and the work involved.
>> That's also a nice example of how painful is writing in XML.
>> You use a totally different tool (Vim) to help another tool that's
>> supposedly made to help you with XML (FrameMaker).
> XML was never intended as an input language for human use but as a
> *human readable* machine-level data representation. On the other
> hand, troff, TeX and the macro packages built upon them are
> low/middle level languages that a human is expected to write and
> understand.

Correct.  But which is the better approach?  If I need to look at the
XML at all, it's not fulfilling its purpose of being a machine-level
representation.  Nobody has yet convinced me that this additional
level is worth the trouble, though I'm prepared to listen to arguments
(and often ask for them).

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