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Re: Some technical suggestions

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On Tue, 9 Nov 1999, Stein Gjoen wrote:

> Documentation has to be installed too, perhaps adding a snity check
> to your program weould be an idea, so that if nothing is found in the
> expected places you get an informative error message. Debian, for
> instance, requires you to actually install the docs, in the relevant
> language.

sanity checks are always good. They'll be added. The more the better.
> It is possible but potentially hazardous. Remember that the package
> managers have a database of existing files, that is, files they know
> they installed. So when new files appear (say another chapter was
> added to a HOWTO) this is not listed in the database and the system
> ends up in an unknown state. 

Hmm, I'm not sure how the packet managers work, so it might be hard not
breaking them, but I can certainly log everything my program does, and
create restorable backups.

Ok, I've thought about the update feature and decided upon this for the
program demo:

The update.txt file lists all pages of every howto in alphabetical order,
when that page changes, the date next to it gets updated. My program
downloads this file, compares it (using diff) with the locally stored one
and then downloads any files which have changed.

If a new page gets added, then it is simply added to the bottom of the
list. If a howto is discontinued (or merged, renamed, etc.), then the old
entry for the file should remain, but as above if there is a new document
it gets added to the bottom of the list.

In practice all this would take is a html copy of the HOWTOs sitting in a
web directory somewhere, updated when the masters on LDP get updated. When
it gets updated the update.txt file would also need updating. I don't
think this would be too much work, and am quite willing for cognite.net
(my domain) to be used for this. (the program checks the file @
http://www.cognite.net/linux/howto/update.txt and then downloads the files
from http://www.cognite.net/linux/howto/)
> For desktop use installing a LDP icon or button might do the
> trick. In Debian the documentation is available from the on screen
> menu system, rather deeply buried methinks.

A desktop icon is a good idea, but not one I'd have suggested, as I don't
run X.
> > Or we could look at it like the user who doesn't need help is the one who
> > knows everything, and if they know everything, they should be able to
> > manually edit the motd.
> This assumes single user machines and that is not always so.
> > Perhaps putting the line in the ~/.bashrc would be a better place.
> This is a far better solution.

That way it can be user specific.
> Another idea: use the fortune program to dispense LDP cookies. This
> conjures up some odd images... More seriously, similar things are
> in everyday use on certain other operating systems, "Tip of the day".
> Making a LDP cookie jar shouldn't be too hard.

Yep, I know what you mean. I'll see about intergrating something into my
> > I'd tar it in its current state, and post it, but, I'm at college, and the
> > prog isn't. So I'll sort it out tonight.
> I am looking forward to seeing this.

So'm I. ;)

I've got the keyword search and the update (mostly) done, the self config
is being worked on, but won't be finished tonight. I think I'll just tidy
the code, comment it, so you know what the hell is going on, tar it and
ftp it to my site within the hour (I guess).
- --	           ,------------------------------,
,==================| S H U N  A N T I O N L I N E |=================,
| David M. Webster '------------------------------' (aka cogNiTioN) | 
|===| I use Linux everyday to up my productivity - so up yours! |===|
|=================|-| PGP KeyID: 0x 45 FA C2 83 |-|=================| 
| <cognition@bigfoot.com> |-|===========|-| http://www.cognite.net/ |
`===========| I walk to the beat of a different drummer |==========='

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