On Thursday 23 October 2008 12:12:23 am Matt Emmerton wrote:
> > On Wednesday 22 October 2008 10:38:40 pm Polytropon wrote:
> >> Hi!
> >>
> >> On Wed, 22 Oct 2008 21:56:20 -0200, Gonzalo Nemmi <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> >>
> >> wrote:
> >> > Is there an easy way to get man to format the man page using plain
> >> > good ISO 216 standard A4 page size?
> >>
> >> My suggfestion for an attempt would be to first strip any control
> >> characters from the output of "man -P cat <entry>" and then pipe
> >> it to an ASCII to PDF converter (a2ps, if I remember correctly);
> >> this would remove any markups, I know, but would lead to a PDF
> >> output using the system's default paper size, A4 (I hope).
> >>
> >> I know this is not the best idea, but it should be accomplishable
> >> without many problems. A better idea would be to write a simple
> >> filter that convert the man page (including formatting characters)
> >> into LaTeX source and then run it through pdflatex.
> >
> > Exactly .. you got it just the way I wanted .. after your explanantion,
> > the
> > question _begs_ to be asked: do we, citizens of ISO 216 adopting
> > countries,
> > have to walk that cumbersome path in order to get something as simple as
> > an
> > ISO compliant document??
> >
> > Shouldn't it be the other way around???
> Perhaps, but since the roots of *BSD are in the USA, letter was a sensible
> default (at the time).

That's a fact and I couldn't agree more with your assertion.

> Now, if a collection of FreeBSD members from ISO 216 adopting companies
> wanted to figure out a way to put "default paper size" into some kind of
> locale option that man (and other tools) could use, then that would go a
> long way towards reducing the pain.
> --
> Matt

Now, and taking into consideration your 100% correct assumption and the fact 
that "letter was a sensible default (at the time)" wouldn't it make a lot 
more sense to do it the other way around?

I mean .. What about figuring out a way to put "default paper size = letter" 
into some kind of locale option that man (and other tools) could use and turn 
the ISO 216 standard into the default option?

Once again, your first assumption about the fact that "letter was a sensible 
default (at the time)" is 100% correct, but ... and having as a counterpoint 
that those times have changed dramatically is it so hard to see the benefits 
associated with adopting ISO 216 (A4 in particular) as default page size 
instead of letter?

I don't work for an ISO 216 adopting company, and hopefully I never will, I 
don't speak for them, and hopefully I never will ... I'm just a citizen of 
the long list of countries who adhere to the ISO 216 and I'd really like to 
see FreeBSD apps slowly turn to use ISO 216 by default (or at least provide a 
painless flag like -pa4 or the likes) instead of non-standard formats which 
only benefit a portion of it's user base, putting the rest of us to stretchs 
in order to get optimal results.

If there's an ISO standar, why not stick to it?

I understand that it may have been an inconvenience in the past times .. but 
those times are long past now, and ISO 216 _is_the_standard_ to which _most_ 
countries (let alone companies) adhere :S

With all due respect: that's my point.

Gonzalo Nemmi
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