[tex-live] merging texmf-doc into texmf-dist

Heiko Oberdiek oberdiek at uni-freiburg.de
Wed Feb 18 13:04:06 CET 2009

On Wed, Feb 18, 2009 at 03:09:17AM +0100, Reinhard Kotucha wrote:

> On 17 February 2009 Karl Berry wrote:
>  > Last year, Heiko and others proposed merging texmf-doc back into
>  > texmf-dist, eliminating one top-level tree for people and programs to
>  > look at.  teTeX never used texmf-doc.
>  > 
>  > The original reason to have texmf-doc (Fabrice created it), as I
>  > understand it, was to be able to easily access documentation by language.
>  > Although one might hope that texdoc or other tools could offer that, the
>  > reality is that they don't; maybe someday, but it's not simple to do.
>  > 
>  > I don't have strong feelings about the merge myself.  But if we're going
>  > to change it, the time to do it will be when we start preparing the 2009
>  > release, i.e., soon.
>  > 
>  > Can we reach a consensus, one way or another?
> I don't think that it's sufficient to have texmf-doc in order to
> determine the language of a particular file.  There are some files
> written in English and French in texmf-dist/doc already and the
> language can't be derived from the file system.  Thus, texmf-doc is
> more or less useless.
> The only reasonable way to support different langauges it that
> interested people add language tags to the Catalogue XML files and
> send patches to Robin.
> At the moment, the directory structure is quite nice:
>   texmf-dist/doc/<engine> 
>   texmf-doc/doc/<language> 
> Do you intend to add an extra directory?  What I have in mind is
> something like:
>   texmf-dist/doc/lang/<language>
> Otherwise the result would be
>   texmf-dist/doc/alatex
>   texmf-dist/doc/aleph
>   texmf-dist/doc/amstex
>   texmf-dist/doc/bibtex
>   texmf-dist/doc/bulgarian
>   texmf-dist/doc/chinese
>   texmf-dist/doc/context
>   texmf-dist/doc/cslatex
>   texmf-dist/doc/czechslovak
>   texmf-dist/doc/dutch
>   texmf-dist/doc/english
>   texmf-dist/doc/eplain
>   texmf-dist/doc/epspdf
>   texmf-dist/doc/etex
>   texmf-dist/doc/finnish
>   ...

That isn't much better than before.
Example, an user is interested in "lshort", then he wouldn't want to
search texmf-dist/doc/*/, texmf-dist/doc/english/*/,
and other languages he knows. Therefore I think, the language directory
should be put at the end:
Then the user sees all language versions of a package at first glance
and can match them with his language skills.

To ease the needs of programs that might support languages in the
future, there can be a strict name convention, e.g. prefixing
lang directories by "lang-" and the same naming system for the
language names as used for language.dat/hyph-utf8 could be used:
  lang-en, lang-pl, ...

Yours sincerely 
  Heiko <oberdiek at uni-freiburg.de>

More information about the tex-live mailing list