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From Bertrand Delacretaz <>
Subject [RT] distributing docs in JavaHelp format
Date Thu, 13 May 2004 15:31:48 GMT
Sorry about another wild idea about our docs, but this one looks closer  
than many, so I'll try to inspire/motivate someone to jump in ;-)

JavaHelp [3], as the name implies, is a java-based help system that  
runs client-side.

Uses HTML 3.2 files for content, with a couple of metadata files, and  
provides full-text indexing and author-maintained indexes, the whole  
thing ("helpset") can be packed in a jar.

It seems like it would be fairly easy to generate JavaHelp documents  
from our docs, see  [1] for example.

This would have many advantages IMHO:
-Website and wiki docs together as a single source of information.
-Efficient client-side full-text search.
-Improving authored indexes incrementally is possible by adding  
keywords and marking important words in our docs (see <indexterm> in  
the above example) when someone has time to do it, no upfront work  
-No additional load on ASF servers (even less assuming people would use  
this more than website docs).
-No need to change our docs format or infrastructure.
-Happy users, most probably ;-)

What's needed:
-Generate a simplified HTML 3.2 format from both xdocs and wiki pages  
(a couple of pipelines)
-Generate the Javahelp helpset, TOC, map and index files (more simple  
-Ant tasks to automate this (some projects have them apparently, see  

So, if anyone has more copious free time than me, you could be the  
Savior Of Our Docs until we have a better web-based solution ;-)



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