[fpc-pascal] DocView and FPC documentation release

Graeme Geldenhuys graemeg.lists at gmail.com
Fri Aug 27 16:20:06 CEST 2010

Op 2010-08-27 14:04, Marco van de Voort het geskryf:
>> Class Documentation:
>>   fpGUI      [fpgui-20100826.zip]    = 0.1MB
>>   RTL + FCL  [rtl_fcl-20100826.zip]  = 1.3MB

These are zip file sizes. Not the unpacked sizes.

> The rtl.inf downloaded from your site is 2MB, the fcl one is 800kb.
>     rtl.chm 2.5MB  the FCL one is 1.3MB. Aside from that, the .INF format
>     simply holds less information, see below:

You forgot the .xct and .kwd files that go with the .chm files. INF is one
file only. And no not less information - they hold the exact same
documentation, just in a different layout.

> mostly reduced content.  The IPF documentation is generated differently, and
> the raw content is simply much less.

The internal INF structure is more efficient. The more text, the more
efficient it becomes - hence the big size difference in the LCL help. A
single word of text only appears once in the INF file - the other
iterations are simply links to that word.

> As an example I created a screenshot comparison of the TStringlist topic,
> with the IPF help inlayed to the HTML/CHM topic:
> Note that the html output screenshot was clipped, but the see-also section
> follows.  (and is better formattted too, with descriptions for the links)

INF class docs are simply in a different layout, but all the same
information is available as HTML or CHM. INF follows the layout of a book,
but less so than the PDF docs. Currently the only missing item, is the
inheritance tree, which I'm working on already. See attached screenshot
that shows where all the other information is located. INF (like PDF)
doesn't shove all information in one page (or section), but rather have
various Overview sections. One for the Class or Type, then Interfaces, then
Methods, then Properties and Events, then individual items of that class or
type. Same info as your HTML screenshot, just split over various tree nodes.

As for cross-linking (one document to another), the INF format supports
that too, I just haven't implement it in DocView yet. But that is not even
a problem at the moment. Simply open RTL, FCL and LCL docs at the same
time, search and index works across all opened documents.

> Note that Classes and other complex type are a special case, but it does
> account for the LCL size being so small, since that mostly is classes.

12.1MB (CHM) vs 3.8MB (INF)
CHM then clearly has a crap load of duplicate/redundant information to make
that a big size difference.

Anyway, nobody is forcing you to use INF. I simply made the option
available for those that want really fast viewable and searches help, much
smaller downloads, and most importantly... available offline with very easy
integration in IDE's or other programmer editors.

  - Graeme -

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

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