Man pages and info pages (was: Python documentation too difficult for beginners)

Tim Harig usernet at ilthio.net
Tue Nov 2 21:02:02 CET 2010


On 2010-11-02, Tim Harig <usernet at ilthio.net> wrote:
> On 2010-11-02, Teemu Likonen <tlikonen at iki.fi> wrote:
>> With the text terminal info browser called "info" as well as Emacs' info
>> browser you can use command "s" (stands for "search"). It prompts for a
>> regexp pattern to search in the whole document, including subsections
>> etc.
>
> Right, pinfo offers this as well; but, then you have to figure out where in
> the nodes that the search has taken you and how to navigate from that node
> to find additional information that you may need.  I have, in general, come
> to think of info pages as a failed experiment and I know very few people
> who actually prefer them over the simpler man pages.

I should add two more things here:

1. Another confusing aspect of the info pages is that you often have to
	know what package a command came from or you don't get the
	information that you are looking for.

2. Series of man pages can be used in a way that seem like they have a
	structure as they can effectively link to other pages.  If I open
	one of the ncurses man pages in pinfo, I can follow what seem like
	links to other man pages.  I can open the main curses page and I
	effectively get an index to all of the other curses functions.



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