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Re: [Groff] CVS Build Problem

From: Jim Reid
Subject: Re: [Groff] CVS Build Problem
Date: Wed, 27 Apr 2005 04:22:05 +0100

On Apr 27, 2005, at 02:44, Keith Marshall wrote:
I'm almost sorry I bothered to mention Jim Reid at all; I had forgotten what an irascible character he is, and I felt rather disinclined to even grace
this drivel with a response.

Personal attacks and insults, especially unfounded ones, have no place in this or any other list. And you then have the gall to whine about not "contributing something constructive"?

I very much doubt if anyone changed groff's build/install procedure with any
intent to make it in any way Linux specific;

Fact: somebody *did* change the build/install stuff. It used to work on BSD/OS. It had done so since at least 1996. Now it doesn't. To some extent, this specific discussion is now moot because BSD/OS is dead. That said, the wider point about trying to keep groff from falling into a Linux-only ghetto remains valid.

I never claimed that whatever changes were made had the *intent* of making things Linux specific. However the changes have had that impact. [As have most of the examples of feature creep in recent groff releases BTW.] This is rather sad because James Clark's initial development platform for groff in the early 90's would have been something BSD-ish. Besides if Linux is now the main (only?) development platform, it's inevitable groff will inherit Linux-isms, either deliberately or subconsciously. "If the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail."

If there is a problem with BSD/OS 4.2, it isn't because of any effort to make groff Linux specific; its simply down to a shortage of developers testing on
the BSD platform.  Groff is free software, Jim.  It comes without any
warranty of any kind, including suitability for any particular purpose. If
it doesn't work for you, you are free to modify it so that it does.

I did and found that an unrewarding and frustrating experience. So I gave up. This is not good for me or, more importantly, for the groff user base.

Instead of just complaining, why not fix the problem, and contribute something

I'm not complaining: read my previous posting. I simply confirmed that the difficulties I had were on the same OS platform and that my attempts to solve them got nowhere. Even though that response was not positive, it was constructive.

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