[rfc-i] What the text version is used for (was Re: The <tt> train wreck)

Bob Hinden bob.hinden at gmail.com
Wed Aug 25 09:10:29 PDT 2021


Martin,

> On Aug 24, 2021, at 7:34 PM, Martin Thomson <mt at lowentropy.net> wrote:
> 
> On Wed, Aug 25, 2021, at 12:21, Bob Hinden wrote:
>> I use text file version of drafts quite a lot currently.  This includes:
>> 
>> - rfcdiff to compare two different versions, this includes:
>>   o After running xml2rfc to see the changes
>>   o Looking at a new text output in emacs (where I edit the xml)
>>   o Looking at the changes when a new draft is published
>>   o Emailing a link to a diff of two text versions
>> - Excerpts from text drafts paste into email as part of list discussions
>> - I even occasionally print a text version from emacs (ps-print) if
>>  I want to read and markup a paper version.
>> 
>> If there were equivalent tools that worked with one of the other
>> formats (html or pdf), I might be able to migrate to using that.   As
>> far as I can tell that doesn’t exist today.
> 
> I will observe that with the exception of diffs, I use HTML for all of the things he lists.  I find that most of these use cases work better from HTML than text.  For instance, I find the added spacing and line breaks in the text format occasionally awkward for pasting quotations into other mediums.
> 
> Diffs of HTML really don't work well, so I find that plain, unpaginated text is best for that.  Using unpaginated text means that I can use ordinary diff tools rather than rfcdiff, which gives me a lot more choice.  That said, I do find the online service that diffs arbitrary URLs to be quite convenient and I do use diffs a lot.

I agree.   Diffs appear to be the main reason to keep using text at this point in time.

Bob


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