Re: [OVC-demo-team] Documentation format

From: Eron Lloyd <elloyd_at_lancaster_dot_lib_dot_pa_dot_us>
Date: Thu Feb 12 2004 - 16:50:04 CST

Hi Dave,

On Wednesday 11 February 2004 12:32 pm, David Mertz wrote:
> >> I had used APT to create the Architecture and a few other documents.
> >
> > Great. While I do think some shorthand markup formats are nice, I
> > never want
> > to rely on everyone being able to use it that wants to. We can turn
> > every
> > document into PDF, index, etc in OOo. Also, it would be cool to make
> > some PR
> > materials, such as handouts and Impress slides, too.
>
> Well... it's a WHOLE LOT easier to install aptconvert than it is to
> install OpenOffice.org. If you run a recent Linux distribution OOo is
> probably there already... but if you run *BSD, or MacOSX, or MacOS9, or
> (god forbid) Windows, you have some substantial work ahead of you. I
> can kinda imagine a back-and-forth of "well, if I export as X, can you
> read -that-".

Actually on Windows it's a breeze to install, simply unzip and click. I hear
the OSX port is almost complete and simply requires the XFree86 package.

> The nice thing with APT (or reST, or my own "smart ASCII") is that you
> can email the raw source to someone (or put it on a
> website/ftp/etc)--they'll have no trouble whatsoever reading it, even
> if they've never heard of APT before. They may not know exactly why
> something is indented, or why some dashes occur, but they don't need to
> for comprehension of the underlying document.

True, but this can be done with OOo by saving to TXT, RTF, PDF, etc. Also, APT
seems too limiting format-wise for any advanced documentation (like a user
manual, etc.). Guess I was talking in a broader sense of "literature." Plus
of course, OOo comes with integrated Python support ;-). It would also be
good to promote another important OSS project.

> Anyway, that was my reasoning, way back when. In practice, I just
> wrote the Architecture myself, at most taking some excerpts from
> people's emails. No one ever looked at the document source, only at
> the HTML export on the website. So for that process, OOo would have
> worked exactly as well.

True, plus I'm also thinking of other materials, such as spreadsheets,
presentations, diagrams, etc. I also wanted to let you know in case you
didn't that someone is working on an O'Reilly book detailing the OOo XML
formats, and is using the Creative Commons license, therefore perhaps
enabling you to use some ideas for your article: http://books.evc-cit.info/.
Can't wait to read the article (I print all of them out)!

Cheers,

Eron

-- 
Eron Lloyd
Technology Coordinator
Lancaster County Library
elloyd@lancaster.lib.pa.us
Phone: 717-239-2116
Fax: 717-394-3083
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Received on Thu Apr 1 02:40:17 2004

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