Subject: Re: bin/7249
To: Mirian Crzig Lennox <>
From: Mike Cheponis <mac@Wireless.Com>
List: tech-kern
Date: 07/17/2000 13:05:32
The problem, of course, is that it's a single "flat file" type of man database.

If the man pages were html, with links to deeper documentation levels (even 
automatically generated documentation), that would be better.

I'm not trying to start a flamewar here, but man pages, a wonderful
innovation 30 years ago, seem to be showing their age.

I propose junking man pages as we know them, keeping all documentation in
html, and making the man command essentially a stripped-down lynx (or other
specialized text-based browser).


p.s. As precedent for using html, the READMEs in pkgsrc are html.

On 17 Jul 2000, Mirian Crzig Lennox wrote:

> Someone mentioned having some man pages be automatically generated
> by software which parses through syscalls looking for error codes
> I just want to add my two cents about that, which is that this is
> the sort of thing (similar) which Sun does with its Java documentation,
> and the result is a lot of... well, STUFF which crowds out the actual
> meaningful documentation.  I much prefer a couple of paragraphs of 
> carefuly-written and coherent documentation to reams of generated
> boilerplate.
> NetBSD's man pages, omissions and all, are about as good as it gets in
> terms of clarity and readability; let's preserve that.
> --Mirian