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Re: [Groff] UTP markup

From: Meg McRoberts
Subject: Re: [Groff] UTP markup
Date: Thu, 27 Jun 2002 10:14:29 -0700 (PDT)

> It's still a little vague.  Right now we're just trying to make the
> book available to groff users as a resource.  The idea, as I
> understand
> it, is to first make a more or less verbatim copy of the original,
> and
> then as a follow up project update it for groff and friends.

Sounds like a plan.  I would be happy to do a bit of a consistency
run through the existing text, and perhaps make some notes as I go
about things to do for the rewrite.

Did you say that you're using .ps 12?  If you'd like to get closer
to the original page breaking, you might want to try:

        .ps 10
        .vs 12

I was around Bell Labs around the time this book was being done and
that was the standard.  I don't know for sure if that is what was
used here, and in those days, we used to invest a lot of time in
some pretty arcane page-breaking tricks -- .sp -.1 and such -- that
are certainly not warranted here.

To clarify, I have the groff binary running on my Caldera system
as well as the man pages, but don't seem to have a built version
of the guide material.

> We're trying to create a resource, not a shrine, so I, for one,
> wouldn't insist on keeping the reference as is.  I wouldn't object
> to removing it altogether.  Really, I don't think it much matters
> for the first go around.  When and if we update the book, then we
> would want to get it right.  Of course, all that's only my opinion.
> Others may differ and who knows what sort of loony legal requirements
> there are.

We might want to add something like "Preface to the Open Source
Edition" just to put things in perspective for the unsuspecting
novice who might happen across this.  That would give us an
opportunity to mention groff and explain how this book is useful
for groff users and such.  Just a thought.  I'm not sure that
X/Open or Caldera has the teeth or the interest to make a stink
about this, but it is probably a small effort to do it right anyhow.

> > 
> > I'd be happy to work on that, although we should remember the
> > immortal quote:."A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small
> > minds, enamored by politicians, philosophers, and divines.  With
> > consistency a great mind has simply nothing to do."  ;-)
> > 
> Perhaps, but I've always been a little suspicious of Emerson on this
> one.  One can just as easily make the case that inconsistency is just
> a sign of intellectual laziness.  In any event, there's no need to
> make heavy going of all of this.  The idea is just to make the book
> look
> like a book, and not like 20 separate essays typeset by 20 separate
> authors according to their own taste.

The quote is delicious, but the crux of the matter is in determining
what constitutes a "foolish consistency" versus appropriate
consistency...  It sounds like we're on the same wavelength here.


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