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Re: Info top node: call in the professional librarian

From: Eli Zaretskii
Subject: Re: Info top node: call in the professional librarian
Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 19:02:58 +0200

> From: Dan Jacobson <address@hidden>
> Newsgroups: gnu.emacs.bug
> Date: 28 Dec 2001 16:54:05 +0800
> Gentlemen, I hope you'll excuse me but it's time to criticize what one
> sees in the Info buffer top node after a standard install.

I don't think this is the right place to complain about that.  What
you see in the DIR node is a concatenation of all the DIR files on
your system.  The DIR file which comes with Emacs is only small part
of it.  I reproduce below the DIR file from Emacs 21.1, so you could
tell which part of what you see is relevant to gnu.emacs.bug.

The DIR files are typically updated when you install a GNU package on
your system.  A program called install-info (part of the GNU Texinfo
package) is the one which does that, and it uses the INFO-DIR-SECTION
and INFO-DIR-ENTRY sections of the Info files to update the main menu
in DIR.

So the inconsistencies you see in your DIR node are a result of
several factors:

  - the shape of the initial DIR file supplied with your system
    (assuming it's some kind of GNU/Linux), which was probably
    crafted by hand by the distributor;

  - insufficient standardization in the INFO-DIR-SECTION and
    INFO-DIR-ENTRY sections;

  - use of old (pre-v4.0) versions of install-info, which would
    sometimes create sections where none were needed, and failed to
    sort the entries correctly;

  - some packages deliberately put their INFO-DIR-ENTRY sections in
    several different INFO-DIR-SECTION sections, to make it easier
    for users to find what they are looking for in a long menu.

In general, if you think an entry in DIR is incorrect, or placed in a
wrong section, you should complain to the maintainer of the relevant

Here's the DIR file shipped with Emacs 21.1:

* Info: (info).         How to use the documentation browsing system.
* Emacs: (emacs).       The extensible self-documenting text editor.
* Emacs FAQ: (efaq).    Frequently Asked Questions about Emacs.

* CL: (cl).             Partial Common Lisp support for Emacs Lisp.
* Dired-X: (dired-x).   Dired Extra Features.
* Ediff: (ediff).       A comprehensive visual interface to diff & patch.
* PCL-CVS: (pcl-cvs).   Emacs front-end to CVS.
* Speedbar: (speedbar). File/Tag summarizing utility.

* Ada mode: (ada-mode). The GNU Emacs mode for editing Ada code.
* CC mode: (ccmode).    The GNU Emacs mode for editing C, C++, Objective-C
                          and Java code.
* Ebrowse: (ebrowse).   A C++ class browser for Emacs.
* IDLWAVE: (idlwave).   Major mode and shell for IDL and WAVE/CL files.

* Gnus: (gnus).         The news reader Gnus.
* Message: (message).   Mail and news composition mode that goes with Gnus.
* MH-E: (mh-e).         Emacs interface to the MH mail system.
* MIME: (emacs-mime).   The MIME de/composition library.
* SC: (sc).             Supercite lets you cite parts of messages you're 
                          replying to, in flexible ways.

* Autotype: (autotype). Convenient features for text that you enter frequently
                          in Emacs.
* Eshell: (eshell).     A command shell implemented in Emacs Lisp.
* EUDC: (eudc).         Emacs Unified Directory Client.
* Forms: (forms).       Emacs package for editing data bases
                          by filling in forms.
* RefTeX: (reftex).     Emacs support for LaTeX cross-references and citations.
* Widget: (widget).     The "widget" package used by the Emacs Customization
* WoMan: (woman).       Browse UN*X Manual Pages "Wo (without) Man".

* VIPER: (viper).       The newest Emacs VI-emulation mode.
* VIP: (vip).           An older VI-emulation for Emacs.

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