Re: Successor to DocBook [tool chain]

On Wed, 2006-07-12 at 08:57 -0400, Curtis Hovey wrote: 
> On Wed, 2006-07-12 at 02:05 -0500, Shaun McCance wrote:
> > > Yes, I'm quite conservative.  I'd say we should wait another 10 years
> > > before start to push the next DTD/Schema onto the community.  ATM, the
> > > problem is not the markup per se, but the lack of a free XML editor.  We
> > > need a combination of oxygen and emacs (psgml/nxml/xml).
> > 
> > If I'm still the Yelp maintainer in 10 years,
> > somebody please have me committed to an asylum.
> > 
> > I completely agree that the lack of a free XML
> > editor is a serious hindrance to our ability to
> > recruit quality tech writers.  I've seen various
> > people try to address this, and one thing that
> > always causes problems is that DocBook is hard.
> > Making pretty buttons for all the inline markup
> > doesn't change the fact that you have too much
> > inline markup.  Now you just have a cluttered
> > user interface.
> Just to clarify this point of the conversation, one reason we need
> another grammar is to address the complexities that authoring tools
> face. We want a grammar that both serves our documentation needs, and is
> easy to add to some existing tool. We need a better editor, and a better
> tool chain, to lower the barrier for contributors to join.

[snip good assessment of authoring tools]

To make that point really concrete, I once tried putting
together some tools to allow me to write DocBook using
Mathematica.  Yeah, I know, non-free, not a solution for
the community at large.  I just wanted to see what I could
manage to put together.

Now, Mathematica employs a simpler block structure than
you would find in most word processors, or in HTML.  And
frankly, I think its simpler block structure is better
for non-presentational documents.  Cells (blocks) are
stacked, no floating weirdness or other crap.  You can
manipulate cells as discrete units.  And they can be
grouped, making it possible to manipulate sections as
discrete units.  Joachim would love it.

It was just ridiculously difficult.  I gave up.  That
was, I believe, my first disillusionment with DocBook.
It's been downhill since then.


[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]