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Re: [groff] mom manpage

From: G. Branden Robinson
Subject: Re: [groff] mom manpage
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2018 09:50:45 -0500
User-agent: NeoMutt/20180716

At 2018-12-01T09:27:03-0500, Doug McIlroy wrote:
> Software that inherently defies concise description is suspect on
> its face.

Ingo made a similar point not long ago when he and I were arguing past
each other.

I agree with this--such a property is definitely grounds for suspicion,

> In all likelihood it was built by accumulation way beyond the bounds
> of any organizing principles that the author(s) may have had at the
> outset.

When this is the case it is of little help to those tasked with the
maintenance of technical documentation.  If we are not prepared to
undertake a revolutionary act, like discarding a tool altogether, or
removing the -u flag from cat[1], then our responsibility is to document
the software system as it exists, warts and all.


[1] I note with some amusement that GNU coreutils documents cat's -u
flag as "ignored", thus reinforcing the FSF's reputation as
woolly-faced, bomb-tossing radicals.  :P

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