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Re: cross manual references in html manuals

From: Eli Zaretskii
Subject: Re: cross manual references in html manuals
Date: Sat, 24 May 2003 11:48:22 +0300

> Date: Tue, 20 May 2003 12:53:13 +0200
> From: Dumas Patrice <address@hidden>
> >     and '.' is left as is. I think '.' should also be considered 
> >     special, and also the file names should not be related to html, 
> > 
> > Sorry, I don't understand either of these points.  How is . special?
> > How are the file names related to html?
> . is special in files names, as it is traditionnally used to separate the
> file name from the extension.

IMHO, this is only so in archaic filesystems.  In modern filesystems,
`.' is just another character, with the last `.' serving as some
indication of the file's type/format/purpose.  (Texinfo doesn't break
this special meaning of the last period in the way it produces HTML.)

> > And, I think this is achievable, because Eli implemented it for
> > makeinfo.  We just generate an anchor for each node, as in (putting the
> > node name as the text of the anchor here is not functional, but anyway
> > ...):
> > Node:&nbsp;<a name="$foo">$foo</a>,
> > ...
> > Node:&nbsp;<a name="%25foo">%foo</a>,
> > 
> > Then the references to the two nodes become -foo.html#$foo and
> > -foo.html#%25foo, respectively.  Do you see a problem with this?
> Yes, it cannot be valid xhtml. In xhtml, only [A-Za-z0-9-_] are 
> acceptable as text for the name= or id= attributes.

Is XHTML relevant to Texinfo?  (Sorry, I don't know what XHTML is.)

If XHTML is relevant and should be supported, I think it will be very
hard to reconcile it with split-HTML mode and cros-manual references.
It's not hard to write code that mangles a node name into something
that only uses [A-Za-z0-9-_], but I don't see how such mangling could
be consistent across manuals.  That is, the hard problem is to ensure
that a different instance of makeinfo that is processing a different
manual will come up with exactly the same mangled name.  Right now, we
use a node name with a few simple and deterministic changes, so the
references we produce are consistent.

> Using 8-bit characters in node names raises another issue, which is 
> how to translate these characters in file names ?

Same as now I suppose: convert them to `-'.

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