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RE: Please post older versions of GNU Emacs manuals on the web

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Please post older versions of GNU Emacs manuals on the web
Date: Sat, 2 Jan 2016 09:19:04 -0800 (PST)

> > Suppose you are using Emacs 24.3 (or Emacs 23 or...).  You visit
> > the Elisp manual and you use `i defadvice' to visit the advice doc.
> >
> > You want to visit the same manual section on line (HTTP).  Perhaps
> > you want to bookmark it for use when you do not have Emacs available.
> > Or maybe you want to send the URL to someone or post it in online
> > Emacs help.  Or maybe you want to print some of the HTML pages.
> >
> > Here's the rub.  Only the manuals for the latest Emacs release
> > are available on line.  And because Emacs (unwisely) removed the
> > doc for `defadvice', you are out of luck.  There is no online doc
> > for you.
> Nothing can ever be "removed" from the Internet.  You can find your
> v24.3 version of ELisp manual, and in it the chapter about advising,
> here:
> https://web.archive.org/web/20121224105042/http://www.gnu.org/software/emacs
> /manual/html_node/elisp/Advising-Functions.html#Advising-Functions
> (Google for "wayback machine" if you want to find old versions of some
> URLs, including URLs that no longer exist.)

Sure, the Wayback Machine is a great resource, and the Internet
Archive responsible for it is a great place to visit in San Francisco.

But telling users to look to Internet archives (or to just google for
"defadvice emacs") does not really answer my question of "Why not?"
or respond to my proposal.

IMO we should offer Emacs users easy online access to the manuals for
older Emacs versions, the same way we offer them easy access to the
recent manuals and to both the recent and older versions of the software.

This is the least we could do to help users and show them respect.
It should not be easier to find information about older releases of
Oracle, Apple, Microsoft, or IBM software than it is to find such
info for Emacs.

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