On Thu, 25 Jul 2019 23:56:33 -0400 desultory <desult...@gentoo.org> wrote:
> Since when is anyone proposing extirpating man pages on the whole? I am > simply making the rather simple suggestion that pulling in more packages > to support presently optional documentation as newly mandated > documentation when such documentation is neither expected nor desired by > the users of systems onto which it would be installed is not a net > benefit to anyone. Mostly because all things that provide texinfo files have to depend on texinfo, and use texinfo tools to compile their info files. And because presently, the required ubiquitous dependency is causing problems, due to the dependency graph going pear shaped. ( though we maaay have solved that, its hard to tell, we worked around it with bundled deps ... ) This leads to a situation where anything that uses texinfo, *may* want to provide a way to remove that dependency conditionally to avoid suffering, and it is reasonable to imagine somebody doing this. And this is already being done with a USE flag in many packages But, policy as proposed makes the only way to do this to pre-build texinfo files yourself and hand-ship them. Which is amusing, because the info situation is unlike man in one specific way: That the majority of users probably don't want them. Yet, all the packages without a USE gating is making these users suffer problems in portage upgrades. Making developers hand-bundle prebuilt info files instead of depending on texinfo with a use flag? I think you'll just see more people actually opt to solve the dependency problem by nuking the texinfo generation of build cycle entirely, and hoping nobody notices. And unlike USE-gated dependencies that can yelled at by QA using simple static analysis tools, QA yelling at people for nuking man pages might be a little harder to implement tools for. ( But FTR, I don't personally care if texinfo gets shot in the process, it is nothing but pain for me ) > Even default on USE flags would be a better "fix" for > the purported problem then making maintainers generate, package, and > publish man pages themselves. On that I *kinda* agree, I think? But the reason they're not defaulting on, is because the complexity it creates can cause breakage, and for every 1 user that wants to read a man page, there are 10 who just need the program (or library) to just F-ing install already so they can go back to focusing on the thing that they actually care about. So "generate man pages and make installs break for lots of people" is a bad default. 1: https://qa-reports.gentoo.org/output/genrdeps/dindex/sys-apps/texinfo 2: Lest there be confusion, this is not my rhetoric, this is just me channelling the average user who has to ask for help in #gentoo yet again to solve a problem that has had to be solved many dozens of times over, who is not a deity of package management quirks and struggles to make sense of portage errors or comprehend random build failures due to bad build-ordering. Sometimes gentoo is barely usable for even lesser deities, and we aught to be doing more to put the power in the users hands to make this crap just stop.
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