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From: Kevlin Henney (kevlin_at_[hidden])
Date: 2001-02-09 08:32:15

In message <00c001c09202$7b3fe9f0$0500a8c0_at_[hidden]>, David
Abrahams <abrahams_at_[hidden]> writes
>I think the boost book could end up being built on the documentation we have
>for the current library set, with at least one additional chapter,
>discussing the boost goals, process, etc... which might itself become part
>of the website. We'd probably have to review all the documentation pretty
>carefully, but that's not neccessarily a bad thing. Other than that (he said
>glibly) there might not be all that much work to do.

I'm involved in a couple of book projects, and have a long relationship
with publishers wrt technical reviewing. My experience suggests that
"there might not be all that much work to do" are common last words :->

It is possible to take a body of documentation and publish a reference
book pretty much straight from that, but these often do not add that
much value unless they provide something unifying that makes them feel
like a book. For instance, Matt Austern's Generic Programming and the
STL goes further than just the SGI docs and is a great book for many
reasons, not least of which is its readability. Compare this with the
Glass and Schuchert book, The STL<Primer>, which was just a printing of
the ObjectSpace docs. Not inspiring, except in the sense that it makes
you want to get your hands either on the more appropriate electronic
form or on another book -- demonstrating that man pages tend to work
better as man pages than as books :->

I think at least one additional chapter is a start, but I would see
quite a few more, showing actual sample programs developed using Boost,
demonstrating more than one feature at a time.

Just my USD 0.02.


  Kevlin Henney phone: +44 117 942 2990
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