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GNU Texinfo 7.0 Released With LaTeX & EPUB 3 Output Support

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  • GNU Texinfo 7.0 Released With LaTeX & EPUB 3 Output Support

    Phoronix: GNU Texinfo 7.0 Released With LaTeX & EPUB 3 Output Support

    Texinfo as the GNU typesetting syntax and the project's preferred documentation format is out with a major update...

    https://www.phoronix.com/news/GNU-Texinfo-7.0

  • #2
    I'm quite surprised there was no LATEX conversion, before now. The DocBook conversion sounds useful, particularly for converting Texinfo pages to DocBook man format.

    FWIW, my preferred way to view Texinfo pages is as HTML (one page per node). The manuals of all the GNU programs you know & love are written in Texinfo. That's not an endorsement for it, however. Having written more than a little LATEX, I'd rather use XML DocBook, than another TEX derivative.

    Regarding manpage formats, I found this overview enlightening:

    Last edited by coder; 07 November 2022, 10:30 PM.

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    • #3
      there are many obstacles to a true shared IT world and the lack of a unified man format is certainly one.

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      • #4
        Why is it called *Tex*info if it didn't even support latex?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by caligula View Post
          Why is it called *Tex*info if it didn't even support latex?
          They both derive from/extend TeX.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by caligula View Post
            Why is it called *Tex*info if it didn't even support latex?
            To build on what Jaxad0127 said, LATEX is essentially a package of TEX macros that simplified layout and generally made TEX more user-friendly. Among its features is a set of commands which correspond to document structures, helping authors focus on structure over style.

            Texinfo is similarly a package of TEX macros, but oriented more specifically towards manpage-like software documentation. Besides being semantically-oriented, it also decouples authoring from layout and styling details. Like its cousin LATEX, Texinfo documents can easily be rendered with print-quality typesetting.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by mos87 View Post
              there are many obstacles to a true shared IT world and the lack of a unified man format is certainly one.
              I think XML DocBook was meant to be the ultimate software documentation format. Its elements fall into roughly two categories: structural and semantic. The structural elements enable modelling of document structures, while the semantic elements provide markup for indicating intent or meaning around the use of special terms. Both support specialized styling, while decoupling style from content. However, the latter can simplify localization, index-generation, and I've even found it useful for practical things like spell-check (i.e. by excluding content of certain elements from checks against normal dictionaries).

              Anyone not intimidated by the prospect of hand-editing HTML would probably take to XML DocBook quite naturally. In my experience, formatting and layout tends to be every bit as good as what the TEX-family of tools can deliver, if not better. Some formatting toolchains even piggyback on TEX, for part of the layout and rendering process.

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