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Draft-1 Manifesto (revised)
DRAFT-1 LDP MANIFESTO
Original was DRAFT-0. Thanks to David Wheeler for his comments. This
text version will be redone as a sgml document and have a few links.
This draft is a major revision which would replace the previous
revision of Sept. 1998.
- => Delete + => Add (replace with) nothing => No change
1+ => Add (modified in revised draft-1) 1- => like 1+ but deleted
- This is the Linux Documentation Project ``Manifesto''
- Last Revision 21 September 1998, by Michael K. Johnson
- This file describes the goals and current status of the Linux
- Documentation Project, including names of projects, volunteers, FTP
- sites, and so on.
+ LINUX DOCUMENTATION PROJECT (LDP) MANIFESTO
1+ Revised on xx October 1999, by David S. Lawyer
1+ This file describes the goals, status, and policies of the LDP.
- The Linux Documentation Project is working on developing good,
- reliable docs for the Linux operating system. The overall goal of
- the LDP is to collaborate in taking care of all of the issues of
- Linux documentation, ranging from online docs (man pages, texinfo
- docs, and so on) to printed manuals covering topics such as
- installing, using, and running Linux.
+ The Linux Documentation Project is working on developing free, high
+ quality documentation for the GNU/Linux operating system. The
+ overall goal of the LDP is to collaborate in all of the issues of
+ Linux documentation. This includes the creation of "HOWTOs" and
+ "Guides". We hope to establish a system of documentation for Linux
+ that will be easy to use and search. This includes the integration
+ of the manual pages, info docs, HOWTOs, and other documents.
- The LDP is set out to produce the canonical set of Linux online and
- printed documentation. Because our docs will be freely available
- (like software licensed under the terms of the GNU GPL) and
- distributed on the net, we are able to easily update the
- documentation to stay on top of the many changes in the Linux
- world. If you are interested in publishing any of the LDP works, see
- the section ``Publishing LDP Manuals'', below.
+ LDP's goal is to create the canonical set of free Linux
+ documentation. While online (and downloadable) documentation can be
+ frequently updated in order to stay on top of the many changes in
+ the Linux world, we also like to see the same docs included on CDs
+ and printed in books. If you are interested in publishing any of
+ the LDP works, see the section ``Publishing LDP Manuals'', below.
- The LDP is essentially a loose team of volunteers with little
- central organization; anyone who is interested in helping is welcome
- to join in the effort. We feel that working together and agreeing on
- the direction and scope of Linux documentation is the best way to
- go, to reduce problems with conflicting efforts---two people writing
- two books on the same aspect of Linux wastes someone's time along
- the way.
+ The LDP is essentially a loose team of volunteers with minimal
+ central organization. Anyone who would like to help is welcome to
+ join in this effort. We feel that working together informally and
+ discussing projects on our mailing lists is the best way to go.
+ When we disagree on things, we try to reason with each other until
+ we reach an informed consensus.
- GETTING INVOLVED
- Send mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Of course, you'll also need to get in touch with the coordinator of
- whatever LDP projects you're interested in working on; see the next
- CURRENT PROJECTS
- For a list of current projects, see the LDP Homepage. The best
- way to get involved with one of these projects is to pick up the
- current version of the manual and send revisions, editions, or
- suggestions to the coordinator. You probably want to coordinate with
- the author before sending revisions so that you know you are working
+ CURRENT PROJECTS and GETTING INVOLVED
+ Currently, the major effort of the LDP is the writing of HOWTOs. If
+ you think you would like to write a certain HOWTO first check to see
+ if one already exists on your topic. If so, you may contact the
+ maintainer and offer to help. If there is no HOWTO about it, you
+ may want to create a new HOWTO. See the Howto-HOWTO and/or the
+ HOWTO-INDEX for more details.
1+ The "Guides" are large book-size LDP documents covering broad
1+ topics such as system administration. We also maintain the
1+ man-pages for C-programming and devices.
+ Other tasks include checking the HOWTOs for clarity and errors,
1+ improving our website, and developing an integrated system of
+ documentation for Linux. If you are interested in any such project
+ (other than writing HOWTOs), contact the current LDP Leader Guylhem
1+ Aznar at email@example.com.
- FTP SITES for LDP WORKS
- LDP works can be found on metalab.unc.edu in the directory
- /pub/Linux/docs. LDP manuals are found in /pub/Linux/docs/LDP,
- HOWTOs and other documentation found in /pub/Linux/docs/HOWTO.
+ LDP WEBSITES
+ The LDP has over 200 mirror sites worldwide where one may inspect
1+ and/or download LDP documents. The main site is
+ http://www.linuxdoc.org. Go here to find the list of mirror sites
+ and then use the nearest mirror site.
- Here are the conventions that are currently used by LDP manuals.
+ Here are the conventions that are currently used by LDP documents.
If you are interested in writing another manual using different
conventions, please let us know of your plans first.
- The HOWTO documents are all required to be in SGML format.
- Currently, they use the linuxdoc DTD, which is quite simple. There
- is a move afoot to switch to the DocBook DTD over time.
+ Regular HOWTO documents must be in SGML format using the linuxdoc
+ DTD, which is quite simple. We may eventually change to the DocBook
+ DTD. For mini-HOWTOs, you may use HTML format if you like.
The guides -- full books produced by the LDP -- have historically been
done in LaTeX, as their primary goal has been to be printed
documentation. However, guide authors have been moving towards SGML
with the DocBook DTD, because it allows them to create more different
kinds of output, both printed and on-line. If you use LaTeX, we have
a style file you can use to keep your printed look consistent with
other LDP documents.
- , and we suggest that you use it.
The man pages -- the Unix standard for online manuals -- are created
1+ with the Unix standard nroff man (or BSD mdoc) macros.
+ LICENSE REQUIREMENTS
- LDP documents must be freely redistributable without fees paid to
- the authors. It is not required that the text be modifiable, but it
- is encouraged. You can come up with your own license terms that
- satisfy this constraint, or you can use a previously prepared
- license. The LDP provides a boilerplate license that you can use,
- some people like to use the GPL, and others write their own.
+ Anyone may freely copy and distribute (sell or give away) LDP
+ documents (or other works) in any media and/or format. No fees are
+ required to be paid to the authors. It is not required that the
+ documents be modifiable, but it is encouraged.
+ You can come up with your own license terms that satisfy these
+ conditions, or you can use a previously prepared license. The LDP
+ has a boilerplate license that you can use if you wish. Some people
+ like to use the GPL, while others write their own. There is a
+ project underway to create a special GPL license just for documents
+ and this may turn out to be a good choice.
- The copyright for each manual should be in the name of the head
- writer or coordinator for the project. ``The Linux Documentation
- Project'' isn't a formal entity and shouldn't be used to copyright
- the docs.
+ The copyright for each document should be in the name of the
+ principle authors. ``The Linux Documentation Project'' isn't a
+ formal entity and thus can't be used as a copyright owner.
- COPYRIGHT and LICENSE
+ BOILERPLATE LICENSE
- Here is a ``boilerplate'' license you may apply to your work. It
- has not been reviewed by a lawyer; feel free to have your own
- lawyer review it (or your modification of it) for its applicability
- to your own desires. Remember that in order for your document to be
- part of the LDP, you must allow unlimited reproduction and
- distribution without fee.
1+ Here is a sample copyright notice and``boilerplate'' license you may
1+ want to use for your work:
1+Copyright (c) 2000 by John Doe (change to your name)
- This manual may be reproduced and distributed in whole or in part,
- without fee, subject to the following conditions:
- * The copyright notice above and this permission notice must be
- preserved complete on all complete or partial copies.
- * Any translation or derived work must be approved by the author in
- writing before distribution.
- * If you distribute this work in part, instructions for obtaining
- the complete version of this manual must be included, and a means
- for obtaining a complete version provided.
- * Small portions may be reproduced as illustrations for reviews or
- quotes in other works without this permission notice if proper
- citation is given.
+ Please freely copy and distribute (sell or give away) this document
+ in any format. Forward any corrections and comments to the document
+ maintainer. You may create a derivative work and distribute it
+ provided that you:
+ 1. Send your derivative work (in the most suitable format such as
+ sgml) to the LDP (or the like) for posting on the Internet. If not
+ the LDP, then let the LDP know where it is available. Send a copy
+ to the previous maintainer's url as shown in the latest version.
+ 2. License the derivative work in the spirit of this license or use
1+ Include a copyright notice and at least a pointer to your license.
+ 3. Give due credit to previous authors and major contributors.
+ If you're considering making a derived work other than a
+ translation, it's requested that you discuss your plans with the
+ current maintainer. We would like to avoid unnecessary forks in
- Exceptions to these rules may be granted for academic purposes:
- Write to the author and ask. These restrictions are here to protect
- us as authors, not to restrict you as learners and educators.
- All source code in this document is placed under the GNU General
- Public License, available via anonymous FTP from
- PUBLISHING LDP MANUALS
+ PUBLISHING LDP DOCUMENTS
If you're a publishing company interested in distributing any of the
LDP documents, read on.
By the license requirements given previously, anyone is allowed to
publish and distribute verbatim copies of the Linux Documentation
Project documents. You don't need our explicit permission for this.
However, if you would like to distribute a translation or derivative
work based on any of the LDP documents, you may need to obtain
permission from the author, in writing, before doing so, if the
license requires that.
You may, of course, sell the LDP documents for profit. We encourage
you to do so. Keep in mind, however, that because the LDP documents
1- are freely distributable, anyone may photocopy or distribute printed
1- copies free of charge, if they wish to do so.
1+ are freely distributable, anyone may make copies and distribute
1+ them. Thus the parts of a book which may be freely copied should
1+ be separated (and identified) in such a manner as to facilitate
1+ copying them without infringing on the copyright of other
We do not require you to be pay royalties from any profit earned by
selling LDP documents. However, we would like to suggest that if you
do sell LDP documents for profit, that you either offer the author
royalties, or donate a portion of your earnings to the author, the LDP
as a whole, or to the Linux development community. You may also wish
to send one or more free copies of the LDP documents that you are
distributing to the authors. Your show of support for the LDP and the
Linux community will be very much appreciated.
We would like to be informed of any plans to publish or distribute LDP
documents, just so we know how they're becoming available. If you are
publishing or planning to publish any LDP documents, please send mail to
- firstname.lastname@example.org. It's nice to know who's doing what.
+ email@example.com. It's nice to know who's doing what.
- We encourage Linux software distributors to distribute the LDP
- manuals (such as the Installation and Getting Started Guide) with
- their software. The LDP manuals are intended to be used as the
- "official" Linux documentation, and we are glad to see mail-order
- distributors bundling the LDP manuals with the software. As the LDP
- manuals mature, hopefully they will fulfill this goal more and more
+ We encourage Linux software distributors to distribute the LDP
+ documents on CDs with their software. The LDP documents are
+ intended to be used as "official" Linux documentation, and we are
+ glad to see distributors bundling the LDP documents with the
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