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From Katharina Hößel <>
Subject Re: [PROPOSAL] Drop PDF / texinfo documentation builds
Date Tue, 21 Mar 2017 21:26:08 GMT
Wow, that change happened more quickly than I expected. I assume this
means that there will be no PDF file available for download - just HTML
and EPUB?

If that's the case, there is one downside I'm seeing: The PDF is
currently the only way to properly quote the CouchDB docs in scientific

When I'm writing a thesis/paper/etc, refering to the large PDF file
with page numbers is a more feasible option than refering to - because you have to add a single bibliography entry
for every unique URL you are citing.
With a PDF, just add one single bib entry, and then cite pages. Having
a canonical version of the document (such as [1]) makes sure every
reviewer sees the same version of your document. Perfect.

Apart from that, even in 2017, I feel that PDF files still have major
advantages regarding offline usage, portability and printability that
HTML and EPUB cannot offer (yet).

I'd also be interested if there are any solid numbers to compare
downloads of different formats of the docs via [2].


Am Sat, 18 Mar 2017 00:55:43 -0400 (EDT)
schrieb Joan Touzet <>:

> Hi everyone,
> I'd like to propose dropping the PDF and texinfo targets from our
> documentation build, or at the very least, having them not be part of
> the default target / not standard deliverables for the project.
> We'd continue to build HTML documentation as part of the workflow,
> naturally, as well as the man pages.
> I don't have any solid numbers, but I'm fairly sure most people use
> or a locally installed copy for their
> documentation for CouchDB rather than the PDF documentation. I
> personally can't remember the last time I opened the docs in PDF
> form. I also have never seen anyone refer to the PDF docs on the
> mailing lists, IRC or Slack when asking for advice or support.
> I've also never seen anyone use or talk about the texinfo target, and
> I've not used them myself.
> Dropping this dependency will allow us to drop TeX/LaTeX from our
> build chain, which speeds up build times by about 90 seconds and
> reduces the size of containers currently being built for our Jenkins
> CI workflow. It also means CouchDB devs don't have to install
> 0.5-1.5GB worth of toolset.
> I've captured this in JIRA as
> and have PRs ready
> to fire off if people agree.
> Your thoughts?
> -Joan

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