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Re: [Gnu-arch-users] Re: Question about bug 8206

From: Mark Flacy
Subject: Re: [Gnu-arch-users] Re: Question about bug 8206
Date: Thu, 05 Oct 2006 12:45:53 -0500

On 2006.10.04 21:11, address@hidden wrote:
> Mark Flacy writes:
>  > On 2006.10.04 03:18, address@hidden wrote:
>  > > But that begs the question.  Mark: why does the GNU Arch Project in
>  > > particular, and the Arch community in general, want semantic markup in
>  > > their documents?
>  > 
>  > For the same reason that anyone else would.
>  > 
>  >
> But that is a list of *how* to use docbook, not *why* it's better than
> a strongly presentation-oriented markup language.

Actually, it is a list of what docbook is used for.  As indicated by the title.

Could similar "whats" be done with a strongly presentation-oriented markup 
language?  Probably.  At some point, however, you'll hit ambiguity.

Try this one:

Money quote: "Presentation markup was adequate as long as your objective was to 
print to a single medium or type of display device. You run into its limits, 
however, when you want to mark up a document so that (a) it can be formatted 
for very different display media (such as printing vs. Web display), or (b) you 
want to support searching and indexing the document by its logical structure 
(as you are likely to want to do, for example, if you are incorporating it into 
a hypertext system)."

You can also take a page from the LyX point of view (

" LyX is a document processor that encourages an approach to writing based on 
the structure of your documents, not their appearance. It is released under a 
Free Software / Open Source license.

LyX is for people that write and want their writing to look great, right out of 
the box. No more endless tinkering with formatting details, 'finger painting' 
font attributes or futzing around with page boundaries. You just write."

In *my* specific case, I use docbook so that I'm not dicking around with 
formatting considerations while I'm simply trying to get the information 
written down.  I can use the docbook toolset to transform what I've got into 
various formats as needed.  I screw around with presentation details when I'm 
trying to actually _present_ something, not when I'm trying to get the ideas 
together in some coherent fashion.

Do I futz around with document structure?  To some extent, but it's more along 
"this paragraph should have been there...oops, need a footnote...yeah, a 
reference to that section would be a good thing for the reader...that needs to 
be in its own section...blah, blah, blah"  

It's been good enough for me and it's been good enough for a lot of other 
people.  (  If you don't want to use 
it for whatever reason, that's fine with me.  With no snide value judgment 
implied; there are others who don't particularly care for it 

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