[tex-live] Did you ever try "texdoc latex"?

Zdenek Wagner zdenek.wagner at gmail.com
Fri Jan 23 16:26:28 CET 2009

2009/1/23 Robin Fairbairns <Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk>:
> Philip TAYLOR (Ret'd) <P.Taylor at rhul.ac.uk> wrote (in response to Keks Dose):
>> Well, I don't get that, but I do get told
>> (from LaTeX.pdf) that "This manual page is
>> not meant to be exhaustive. The complete
>> documentation for this version of TEX can
>> be found in the info file or manual /Web2C:
>> A TeX implementation/.".  Which is also,
>> perhaps, not the most useful piece of
>> information with which hit the beginner
>> at the outset ...
> which shows, perhaps, a general weakness of tex as a whole (not just
> latex) -- there are too few documenters.  we have a high-powered group
> of people putting distributions together (not just the tl crowd), and
> almost no-one who spends signficant time on "general" documentation.
> as a result, we have no coherent plan about documentation, and it's no
> great surprise that a un*x man page turns up on phil's widnoze computer,
> and that something else discouraging turns up on keks's.  (note that
> there are people who swear by un*x man pages, but i've always considered
> they were things written by geeks for geeks.  as a grey-haired old geek
> myself, i often find they let me down.)
> so what is to be done?  i work on a faq, but i fear developments are
> running away from me.  i don't know of anyone else in the tex world, who
> considers his/her main contribution is documentation.
> any suggestions?  or shall i work up a tugboat paper appealing for
> support in a new push?
For plain TeX users there is "Gentle Introduction to TeX", for LaTeX
users there is "The Not So Short Introduction to LaTeX2e", maybe
texdoc should point to these documents.

FAQ is good for those who already know (La)TeX and need an answer to a
specific question/problem. Beginners are not able to ask the right
question, therefore FAQ does not help them. They need a good tutorial.

> robin

Zdeněk Wagner

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