[fpc-pascal] DocView and FPC documentation release

Graeme Geldenhuys graemeg.lists at gmail.com
Thu Aug 26 17:55:13 CEST 2010

Hi Everybody,

I am pleased to announce that fpGUI's DocView is available for download in
a convenient binary executable from fpGUI's SourceForge project page. See
the URL below.

I have also made available RTL, FCL, LCL and fpGUI class documentation in
INF help format. The documentation downloads are grouped, so you only need
to download what you really need.


Download size:
DocView plus it's help file:
  Linux 32-bit    =  533KB
  Linux 64-bit    =  446KB
  Windows 32-bit  =  367KB

Class Documentation:
  fpGUI      [fpgui-20100826.zip]    = 0.1MB
  RTL + FCL  [rtl_fcl-20100826.zip]  = 1.3MB
  LCL        [lcl-20100826.zip]      = 1.4MB

Why DocView and INF help?
INF is a very compact and very efficient file format created by IBM and was
originally meant for OS/2. As an example of efficiency, let compare the LCL
documentation. LCL class documentation in INF format is a mere 3.8MB in
size - compare that to the same documentation in HTML format (65MB) or CHM
format (12.1MB).

DocView + INF is a perfect match. Here are some of DocView's features:

* DocView's rich text component is custom built for viewing INF
  documents. It is also very fast. Just view something like
  LCL's Forms.TApplication method overview help and you will see.
  DocView can load it instantly, under a second. Scrolling such a
  large page is no problem either [unlike another help viewer I
  know ;-)].

* DocView can open a single INF file, multiple INF files, or a whole
  directory of INF files. DocView doesn't even blink.

* Opening multiple files means the Table of Content tab appends each
  help files TOC to the list. Indexes get merged as well.

* Searching is lightning fast, and across all open help files.

* Create a "virtual bookshelf" of documentation. Docview can open
  directories, or environment variables pointing to help files.

* DocView is customizable. Change the fonts, adjust the search
  highlighting color, hide the navigation tab etc.

* DocView comes with it's own help file to explain all it's features and
  has multiple examples of how it can be used.

* DocView is very easy to integrate with any programmer editor or IDE.
  No need to have support compiled into a IDE.
  Attached are screenshots of how to set it up with Lazarus IDE and
  MSEide. Simply use the "external tools" feature of each IDE, and pass
  in the current token to edit cursor is on.

* The latest fpdoc (in FPC 2.5.1) has had a major rewrite of the IPF
  output writer. IPF is the markup language (similar to other markup
  languages) used to create INF help files.
  fpGUI's source repository contains the IPF Compiler in binary form,
  for Windows and Linux. It also includes a IPF Reference Guide.

What's to come
* I have more features planned for DocView.

* I'm working on translating the Free Pascal Language Reference document
  to INF format. That way developers have syntax help as well in there

* Lots more fpGUI class documentation coming.

Please enjoy, and I welcome any feedback.

  - Graeme -

fpGUI Toolkit - a cross-platform GUI toolkit using Free Pascal

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