DocumentationStandards

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Here is a list of proposals for documentation standards for the User Manual (most important for DocBook xml and content)

Contents

DocBook tags we should use

(official definitions can be found here)

  • <book> - main tag encapsulating the whole book
  • <part> - For larger sections (e.g. "Menus", etc; should only be a few of these in the book)
  • <chapter> - subsections of a part (e.g."File" menu)
  • <section> - subsections of a chapter (e.g. "Save" menu item)
  • <para> - encapsulating any subsection of a chapter that needs a distinction from the preceeding and proceeding text (textual paragraphs, text content withing each list item or procedural item, etc)
  • <formalpara> (to replace <simplesect>) - paragraphs with titles (uses <title> tag)
  • <guimenu> - a top-level menu (such as "File")
  • <guisubmenu> - any sub-menu of another menu
  • <guimenuitem> (guimenuitem accel accel guimenuitem) - is for a terminal item on a menu (for example "save as" in the "File" menu)
  • <guilabel> - stands for any label at any places : Fill at the bottom or X property ...
  • <accel> - a key used with a meta key for key commands (e.g. "s" when you hit "ctrl+s" to do a quick save)
  • <emphasis> used for emphasizing text - WHEN SHOULD THIS BE USED?
  • <keycap> - the actual label of a key on the keyboard (usage: probably used within <keycombo> tags most often)
  • <keycombo> - standard key combination for a command (e.g. "ctrl+s" would be marked up as <keycombo><keycap>Ctrl</keycap><keycap>S</keycap></keycombo>)
  • <mediaobject> - a wrapper for media (if multiples media objects are included in the same tag, only one is shown, depending on the displaying system) (see below)
  • <imageobject> - a wrapper for an image file (see below)
  • <imagedata> - pointer to the image file (used with "fileref" attribute, see below)
  • caption> - brief but specific description of an image
  • <guiicon> - points to an application icon image file (see below)
  • <inlinemediaobject>
  • <itemizedlist>
  • <listitem>
  • <procedure>
  • <step>
  • <variablelist>
  • <varilistentry>

Usages

  • tag-tree for pictures especially screenshots and icons (for tools and cursors)
    • mediaobject imageobject imagedata fileref="" imageobject mediaobject
      • caption - l├ęgende
    • guiicon inlinegraphic fileref="" guiicon
  • indexeterm primary secondary indexterm - tag for index
  • itemizedlist listitem para listitem itemizedlist
  • procedure step step procedure
  • variablelist varilistentry => ?????????? what's that ?

Basic Structure of a Part

  • title+Intro+screenshot+Activation+Procedure+Additional infos+Links

<part> <title></title>

<chapter> <title></title>
 <section> <title></title>
  <indexterm> <primary></primary><secondary></secondary></indexterm> (here or after ?)
  <formalpara> <title></title>
   <mediaobject> <imageobject><imagedata firelef="url/"></imageoject>
   
   </mediaobject>
  <para></para>
    <itemizedlist><listitem><para></para></listitem></itemizedlist>
    <emphasis></emphasis>
 </section>
<chapter>

</part>

Miscellany

  • Links to sections should be named the same as the section title, except don't use caps and replace all spaces with dashes, e.g., the link for section "Menu Bar" would be "menu-bar".

References

Simplified DockBook - http://www.docbook.org/schemas/sdocbook/elements.html

Gnome project standards project - not much there yet as it's developing - http://live.gnome.org/ProjectMallard

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