Re: Feedback from downstreams presentation from DX hackfest 2015

On Mon, 2015-02-02 at 07:55 -0800, Jasper St. Pierre wrote:

On Feb 2, 2015 6:37 AM, "Philip Withnall" <philip tecnocode co uk>

On Mon, 2015-02-02 at 12:19 +0100, Olav Vitters wrote:
On Mon, Feb 02, 2015 at 08:05:00AM +0000, Philip Withnall wrote:
It was suggested that I send the presentation to DDL, since it
might be
of general interest. I haven’t modified it from the hackfest
version, so
please let me know if you have any questions.

Can we assume that most still needs to be actioned? Also
interested what
discussions there were during the hackfest to improving this. E.g.
Should we maybe reach out to our advisory board? Some things
lack of documentation. So with DX hackfest and documentation at
time I also wonder if there were any possibilities to improve

Some of the items need actioning via bugs, which I will sort out.
of them have already been fixed (either as part of the client work
Collabora, or by others in the time since). Some of them are
and can only be used as general guidelines for trying to avoid such
problems in future (e.g. in new API designs).

What do you mean by reaching out to the advisory board? Reaching out
further feedback from them as downstreams, or reaching out for
to fix such issues? I think the former would be interesting. I’m not
sure the latter is worth their time, since it’s a very loosely

There were some DX–documentation discussions, although I wasn’t
in all of them so I can’t report fully. One interesting discussion
up with a set of requirements for any replacement for gtk-doc:
 1. Do not want to write XML in documentation comments. Too painful,
    a steep learning curve.
 2. No version control program (but wikis’ version control is fine).
    much of a barrier for contribution.
 3. No waiting for review of documentation changes — post-hoc gives
    much lower barrier to contribution instead.
 4. Instant gratification: documentation changes should be visible
    instantly, rather than waiting 6 months for a GNOME release
    the docs hit
 5. Documents need to be available offline in Devhelp.
 6. Devhelp needs to give you documentation for the version of the
    library you’re using (e.g. in JHBuild), not the version
installed on
    your system, which is invariably outdated.
 7. Automatically generate documentation from annotations as much as
    possible (e.g. eliminate ‘Free return value with g_free()’ in
    of (transfer full)).
 8. Topic-based help which can be reorganised dynamically; eliminate
    in-order Docbook indexes. Basically the Mallard approach for
    reference documentation.
 9. Don’t put big code examples in C comments; move them to separate
    files instead, which can be compiled stand-alone. Have a way of
    limiting what gets rendered in the docs, plus a link to the full
10. Don’t parse C with regexps; use documentation from GIR files,
    allow g-ir-scanner to do the C parsing legwork.

I'm confused. You want both a wiki, and docs embedded in comments?
What are you imagining here?

Sorry, I should have explained that more clearly.

Documentation is generated from C comments as at the moment,
reformatted, uploaded to, and then some kind of
online interface can be used to edit the documentation (and possibly add
comments to it) with instant gratification. That’s what the first few
points are about.

There are no requirements covering how these online edits would be fed
back into the C comments, but presumably that would happen somehow. The
fact that there are no requirements means nobody in the hackfest
discussion had strong feelings about how it should be done.


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