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Re: Choosing graphics backend for documentation

From: Mike Miller
Subject: Re: Choosing graphics backend for documentation
Date: Mon, 17 Aug 2015 12:43:45 -0400

On Mon, Aug 17, 2015 at 11:07:39 -0500, Daniel J Sebald wrote:
> As far as the manual goes, "working" is the key word.

I agree. I think there's a lot going on in this thread which makes the
various issues confusing.

> With the recent
> development version I get errors, and the make process keeps attempting to
> build the manual.  The solution for me is to just configure off the
> documentation and not worry about it.

Does configure --disable-docs do the right thing for you?

> Could the manual build be configured
> off by default?  Then have
> make manualwithqttoolkit
> make manualwithgnuplottoolkit
> make manual (default whatever)

I think this is unnecessarily confusing. The intent is to be able to
build the docs with make automatically and have the built manual
distributed with the source. This lets others build from source and
not have to worry about disabling or bypassing the make rules because
the files are already there. Building the manual is a maintainer task,
not an ordinary user task.

I agree with Michael that it's important that the official manual be
built with (one of) the OpenGL toolkit(s) so the images that are
distributed with the official source release and posted on the website
are always consistent with what most users will work with by default.

As to "working":

* Does --disable-docs still work to avoid building the manual? If not,
that's a bug.

* Does building from the source tarball (*not* from hg) error
somewhere if the user doesn't have OpenGL or OSMesa? If not, that's a

* If users don't have the capabilities to build the manual, it should
be disabled automatically. This used to be as simple as "if you don't
have texinfo or gnuplot, disable docs". This will need some work one
way or another.

So the big question:

* Do we want to allow users who do not have OpenGL or OSMesa to build
the manual images using Gnuplot as a fallback? Do we want to require
some manual option be given to make sure that this doesn't happen
somehow accidentally when an official release is being built? Or do we
want to require working OpenGL and OSMesa to build the manual at all
from now on? Or can we resort to building the images on-screen for
users without OSMesa?

Ben, does patching the scripts to *not* set the plots invisible work
for you? I'm still not clear whether the OSX problem is just OSMesa or
if it's any use of GL2PS.


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