[Mono-docs-list] Proposing a new documentation subsystem

Jonathan Pryor jonpryor at vt.edu
Mon Dec 3 15:31:51 EST 2007

On Mon, 2007-12-03 at 15:26 -0500, Miguel de Icaza wrote:
> > I spoke with Lluis Sanchez about using Mono.Addins to extend the
> > documentation system and it seems a good approach because we will get
> > all the subsytem for documentation updates and managment (both for
> > providers and for doc sources) for free.
> > 
> > This will enable downloading new docs or providers without updating
> > the whole monodoc system. We can also get rid of the several xml files
> > needed to finally reach the documentation files and free monodoc
> > subsytem of some managment code.
> Which kind of add-ins do you have in mind?

I think he was suggesting that we bundle the XML docs *as* an add-in.
(At least, this was my interpretation, and made me go "Cool!")  This
would allow using the existing Mono.Addins infrastructure to update the
documentation after installation time.

So no format changes (beyond what I've already proposed), just a
distribution model change.

This sounds rational to me.

> Supporting downloading updates is a pipeline issue more than an "add-in"
> issue.   Sure, you can write an add-in, but the fundamental issues are:
> 	* Someone needs to write the new docs (these happen at glacial
> 	  speeds)

If we use add-ins as the package model and not the file format, this is
a non-issue -- we use the existing docs, and write a program to compile
the current (.source .tree .zip) file tuple into an add-in.

> 	* If the above were fixed (hundreds of new docs per day), 
> 	  updating docs should just be part to the core Monodoc 
> 	  functionality.

Exactly, but Mono.Addins already has updating as a core part of its
functionality, so using Mono.Addins as the *distribution* format would
allow code reuse here.

 - Jon

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