Hi,

I don't know if this is helpful in any way, but here is an URL re a summit
on documentation:

http://www.oreilly.com/frank/oscon_summit.html

Regards,
Cam

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lewis Perin" <perin / panix.com>
To: "ruby-talk ML" <ruby-talk / netlab.co.jp>
Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 12:43 PM
Subject: [ruby-talk:04087] Re: OT: Re: P. of least effort -- fragile
typesetters


> "Conrad Schneiker" <schneiker / jump.net> writes:
>
> > Hi,
> >
> > "Hugh Sasse Staff Elec Eng" <hgs / dmu.ac.uk> wrote:
> > > On Thu, 13 Jul 2000, Conrad Schneiker wrote:
> > >[...]
> > > So what would you recommend for producing documents, papers etc?
> >
> > I haven't looked around recently, so I don't know if there are any good
> > answers.
> >
> > > Having wrestled with Word, Star Office, eqn|tbl|troff,  and hand
crafted
> > > PostScript drawings (ouch!), I'd be interested.  Is Lout flexible
enough?
> >
> > This is the first time I've looked at it. Certainly looks interesting.
> > Anyone else have any experience with it?
>
> I asked a friend, Bennett Todd (bet / rahul.net), who was nice enough to
> contribute the following along with the offer to correspond with those
> who wish to take this topic further:
>
>   Lout is pretty appealing; it's both simpler than TeX, and
>   sufficiently powerful to allow nice-looking output from simple
>   input. It only generates PostScript, but there aren't that many
>   other targets of interest for a typesetter anymore, and if you do
>   happen to have one, GhostScript will probably allow you to do
>   beautiful output to them anyway, so that's really not much of a
>   limitation.
>
>   But like TeX, Lout is only for typesetting; it's not the choice for
>   rendering to e.g. HTML, or plain ASCII text, or info format, or RTF,
>   or LyX, or ....
>
>   I dabbled with Lout some years back, but it just never grabbed me,
>   because the markup was as cumbersome and clutterful as LaTeX, and it
>   didn't open up all the output alternatives I like.
>
>   I switched to using SGML for a while, with the Linuxdoc DTD, and did
>   quite a few documents with that. It's a fine choice for supporting
>   multiple outputs, but once again the source clutter is right up
>   there, enough to put me off a little bit.
>
>   At the moment I'm enjoying using sdf (listed in Freshmeat), which
>   takes something very close to straight ASCII text and deduces most
>   of the structure from it, so requiring less markup clutter; it can
>   output various formats, and since SGML is one of 'em it can
>   automatically produce many great output formats by multiple
>   translation.
>
>   I'm waiting for a new tool, currently under development; when it
>   becomes available I expect to be able to use text with essentially
>   no markup at all, pure straight ASCII text, and parse that to deduce
>   doc structure and add SGML markup.
>
>   Certainly when doing this sort of thing the first target to create
>   is SGML, since it buys you the most, but I think it'll be worth
>   building direct targets for other backends, including re-formatted
>   text (making it a _brutally_ brilliant replacement for fmt(1) or
>   par(1)), nice clean hand-editable portable HTML, and Lout. I
>   continue to like lout for typesetting, even though I hope to not
>   have to hand-write any.
>
> /Lew
> --
> Lew Perin / perin / mail.med.cornell.edu / perin / acm.org
> www.panix.com/~perin/
>