[Doc-SIG] An 'apropos' utility for documentations

Manuel Gutierrez Algaba Manuel Gutierrez Algaba <irmina@ctv.es>
Sun, 29 Nov 1998 16:07:19 +0000 (GMT)

Dear folks,

I'm a Linux user that always has a bad time when installing a new
package or reading the mastodontic documentation that most programs

This morning I have a simply idea that I'd like you to consider and
to comment. 

Do you know Unix command 'apropos' ?
Well, the idea is to do an apropos command ( written in python
 of course) containing all the 'concepts' and tips related with
the documentation of a program. 
Exactly, imagine  that your program can be installed in AIX, Linux,
and MS-dos,and for every platform it needs certain procedures. 

Well, apart from a description in a README file with the differences.
It'd be easy  to build a database as:

core_of_it.py : AIX, Linux, MS-DOS, config.py, ../bin/files, setup,
structures, socket

This information could be introduced on line by the author, or 
it could be generated automatically ( at least part of it ).   

The fields of the database could be grouped  so more complex 
searchs could be done ...
Or the fields themselves could be entries in the database. 

Is it already done ? Can any of the maintainers of documentation
of programs consider this feature ? Do you think is useful ?
Do you think is easy to do ? 

My addresses / mis direcciones: 

www.ctv.es/USERS/irmina ---> lritaunas peki project/proyecto in python

www.ctv.es/USERS/irmina/pyttex.htm ---> page of spanish users of latex
                              / pagina de usuarios en espanyol de latex
www.ctv.es/USERS/irmina/texpython.htm --> page of drawing utility for tex 
                         / pagina de utilidad de dibujo para Latex