LFS Future Braindump

Christian Wurst christian.wurst at gmail.com
Wed May 28 04:55:13 PDT 2008

On Tue, May 27, 2008 at 6:59 PM, Randy McMurchy
<randy at linuxfromscratch.org> wrote:
> Christian Wurst wrote these words on 05/27/08 11:47 CST:
>> The OpenLDAP description is a little short: Ok, it's an implementation
>> of the LDAP, I would have guessed so, but what do I need LDAP for?
>> If you're not familiar with that package you'll see at a glance if
>> this package could be of interest for you - if yes, you'll google it
>> for more information. If it really is that complex, this would be the
>> location for a link: "More information can be obtained here: LINK" or
>> something similar.
> But honestly, why should BLFS go to the trouble of copying or
> paraphrasing the information here?
> http://www.openldap.org/faq/data/cache/3.html
> In my opinion simply stating: See [insert above URL] is sufficient.

Well, I disagree here. The FAQ is very technical in nature, and thus
takes some time to understand what the package does. What I'd like to
see is a simpler, more non-technical description, to help categorizing
unknown (to the user) packages very fast. Something short you might
answer to someone who asks you: "What does it do? What to ppl use it
So for LDAP this might be something like: "LDAP is an application
protocol for querying and modifying directory services running over
TCP/IP. Two common applications are to make user/group data or address
book information availible in a network."

(I'm not really familiar with LDAP, so I hope this isn't completely
wrong or hopelessly incomplete, I did my best to summarize what I've
read yesterday evening.)

> I'm not arguing the book cannot be better and more descriptive, but
> in my opinion Editor time is better spent updating the book with
> new/updated packages rather than regurgitating information found
> elsewhere.

Thats right. But the short description I'd like to see doesn't take
that much time.

> But again, something like LDAP can be used for many things and I'd
> hate to see one specific use be listed, but others left out, as
> readers may not realize there are other applications for LDAP
> besides what may be described in BLFS.

IMO this isn't so bad if you make clear you only list some examples.
Examples help me a lot in understanding things, thats why I would like
to see that added to the book. I'd realize that if you can make adress
book information available via LDAP, this probably can be also done
with other information, say, a library catalog. If thats what I want
to do I would mentally mark this package as "probably does what I
want" and read further into it.

> And FWIW, if anyone *does* update packages with more descriptive
> text than what already exists in BLFS, I'm all for it. I just don't
> want a description of the package to be the main focus of Editor
> development.

Me neither, and I also don't want to try to force editors to do that.
(That wouldn't work anyway I guess :)) It's just an idea and if many
editors find good, we'll have a lot such descriptions, if not, well,
I've tried. :)


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