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Re: On being web-friendly and why info must die

From: Phillip Lord
Subject: Re: On being web-friendly and why info must die
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2014 11:19:24 +0000
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.3 (gnu/linux)

Ludovic Courtès <address@hidden> writes:
>> Asiidoc does do indexes, as does docbook. And, yes, multiple output
>> formats. Seriously, almost everything does multiple output formats.
> OK.  What about documentation-oriented markup (think @deffn, @deftp) and
> cross-manual references?  They don’t do that, do they?

No. Asciidoc has a plugin mechanism (which I haven't used and can't
vouch for), so it could be extended. Org-mode texinfo export may have
this support, but I don't know. Both, of course, can do "pass-through",
and drop code straight to the output format.

Org-mode can pop out lisp and run it. Or it can eval code and put that
into the output format. How does this work in texinfo?

I've always wondered, with the emacs doc about things like this...

 -- Function: current-buffer
     This function returns the current buffer.

               ⇒ #<buffer buffers.texi>

Now, this describes `current-buffer'. But the real documentation for
this is here:

doc: /* Return the current buffer as a Lisp object.  */

How do you include docstring from a lisp function or var in texinfo?

>> Web pages and browsers can do anything at all. Here is a webpage which boots
>> so linux and runs some of GNU
> I’ve heard of JavaScript, thank you ;-), but I’d rather (1) run code
> that’s hosted locally, and (2) be able to use a JS-less browser if I
> have to use a browser at all (I think it’s fair to assume that some
> Emacs users would rather use emacs-w3m or eww.)

Well, maybe once Emacs uses guile, we can run JS in eww. But in the same
way that a webpage can do anything at all, a web browser written for
Emacs can do anything at all, cause we can add lisp.

> Leaving out cross-manual refs would be a big loss for GNU as a project
> to develop a coherent system, because manuals would be left isolated.

Go to the Emacs manual, and type "i", and "current-buffer". [No match].
Which is strange, because there is documentation for current-buffer, in
the elips manual.

So, the manuals already are isolated. The info index functionality is
not really as rich as it seems.

> To me, if replacing Texinfo and/or Info results in loss of functionality
> at all, that’s a showstopper.  I’m surprised alternative systems are not
> studied with that in mind.

I have this great idea for a hypertext system. What it will do is have
globally unique identifiers, so that it is possible to put
cross-references between any two documents published using this
hypertext system. I shall the cross references IRIs (for Info Resource
Identifiers), and the whole system will be WWI (World-Wide Info). Are
you with me?


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