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[bug #61314] [PATCH] [me] clarify documentation of $v and $V registers

From: G. Branden Robinson
Subject: [bug #61314] [PATCH] [me] clarify documentation of $v and $V registers
Date: Sat, 30 Oct 2021 02:07:57 -0400 (EDT)
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0

Follow-up Comment #3, bug #61314 (project groff):

Hi, Dave!

[comment #2 comment #2:]
> [comment #1 comment #1:]
> > 
> >     [It would be nice to say "type size" instead of "point size", but
> >     consistent usage would demand a much more intrusive change.  --GBR]
> > 
> Also, use of "point size" was pretty vigorously defended on the email list:
see downthread of

I'm aware--I participated. :)

As noted there, I take Bjarni's point (no pun intended).

I perceive no crime against pedagogy if the me(7) and mom(7) documentation
consistently uses and prefers "point size" (as, in fact, they appear to do).

But for documents which it has fallen to _me_ to maintain, I see distinct
advantages to "type size" in most contexts.

For those drawing up my bill of indictment, I'll go ahead and confess to three
heresies, all of which I've shifted our documentation some way towards:

"number register" -> "register"[1]

"adjustment" -> "alignment", when no spaces get their widths altered

"point size" -> "type size"

I acknowledge that all of these offend traditional mnemonics for some of the
oldest request names that exist: "nr", "ad", and "ps".

In all of these cases I think the benefit is worth the cost.  Locutions like
"string-valued number register" are abusive of the learner's mind.

In the instant case, me(7) was written and pretty much remains in the era
where the only unit used by *roff systems to reckon the type size was the
point.  "Scaled points" was a groff innovation.  So the use of term is indeed
less likely to occur in that context.

The bottom line is that I like consistency, but I also recognize that the
domains of its application are contextual.


[1] I have a rewrite of most of the material in our Texinfo manual on
registers pending.


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