[TUHS] man-page style

Toby Thain toby at telegraphics.com.au
Sat Nov 17 03:29:13 AEST 2018

On 2018-11-16 11:55 AM, Paul Winalski wrote:
> On 11/16/18, Grant Taylor via TUHS <tuhs at minnie.tuhs.org> wrote:
>> On 11/15/2018 10:32 PM, Dave Horsfall wrote:
>>> The Unix manpage format is the epitome of perfection; they tell you
>>> everything you need to know, and in the right order.  Frequently I
>>> cannot recall a particular flag (but I know what it does), and it's
>>> right there at the start.
>> I think man pages make a great reference.  But I don't think they are a
>> good teaching source for someone that doesn't know the material or what
>> the components are for.
> I agree with Grant.  If you want to know what a particular command
> does and what its options are, man pages are fantastic.  If you are a
> new or casual user trying to find out what command(s) to use to
> accomplish a particular task, the man pages are an exercise in
> frustration and futility.  Other OSes have done a better job in that
> area (the VMS and DTSS HELP commands come to mind).  IMO ideally one
> should have both--a generalized "help" command for those trying to
> find out what command to use, and "man" as reference material.  UNIX
> and Linux have never had a proper help facility.  Or at least I never
> was able to find it.

GNU understood the difference, and wrote separate manuals (e.g. `info
bash`, `info bison`, etc).

> -Paul W.

More information about the TUHS mailing list