[NTG-context] Is there anything like developer's manual for ConTeXt?

Taco Hoekwater taco at elvenkind.com
Tue Mar 17 09:36:54 CET 2009

Xan wrote:
> En/na Corin Royal Drummond ha escrit:
>> Wei-Wei Guo wrote:
>>> Hi everyone,
>>> After fighting with ConTeXt one month, I find it's too difficult. I
>>> have two years
>>> experience of LaTeX. I never thought ConTeXt could be so difficult.
>>> Using ConTeXt
>>> is like climbing a steep mountain, every step need extensive
>>> searching, reading,
>>> and asking.
>>> Sorry for the useless complain. I'm stuck by so many problems. I
>>> might be lack of
>>> the basic knowledge of ConTeXt. Could someone tell me where I can
>>> find manuals or
>>> papers that describe the logic of ConTeXt design and basics of
>>> ConTeXt programming.
>>> Thanks in advance.
>>> Best wishes,
>>> Wei-Wei
> Yes, there is a hole in that way. I'm agree too.
>> Many have voiced the same complaint.  I understand that Hans and every
>> one are occupied with building MKIV (aka LuaTeX), and that
>> documentation is not their highest priority.  There's the wiki, the
>> wonderfully active mailing list, and what used to be decent docs from
>> 2001/2002 timeframe.  But yes, it's a steep hill to climb, made worth
>> it only by the relative awesomeness of ConTeXt.
>> If there is an existing strategy for creating documentation, I'd love
>> to hear it.
>> My feeling is it's it's time to pay someone to write some good docs. 
>> Someone who's not on the development team, who has experience writing
>> technical documentation, and who can shepard list members into crowd
>> sourcing some real documentation.
> The problem is who. Who has this high technical knowledge and he/she is
> not developer?. People I know that have this high tech knowledge of
> ConTeXt is developer.
>>   MKIV is stabilizing into usefulness, and now is a good time to
>> start.  I suspect list members would donate to such a project, plus we
>> could get some grant money (if that's not all dried up due to the
>> global economy), and maybe some contribution from Pragma itself, and
>> other orgs that depend on ConTeXt.  A patchwork quilt of financing,
>> and a project coordinator/writer who sees their work as a labor of
>> love, and a side job, could make this happen.  Even if we could only
>> afford 10 hours of work a week, that could get a lot done.
>> In terms of process, I think someone to comb the list archives for
>> common problems and solutions, and wikify them would get the most bang
>> for the buck initially.  These wiki entries could later be
>> ConTeXtified into printed (and screen) docs, like Hans' awesome old
>> manuals.
> Good idea.
> Just a suggestion. If someone starts new documentation, it should be
> free. Now the "only" documentation for users is "ConTeXt manual",
> "Context, an excursion" (and some PracTeX journal and MAPS journal
> articles). These documents are copyrated by Pragma. And for the other
> hand the license of documentation of ConTeXt is Creative Commons
> Atribution Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0.
> I think it's better if the new documentation were free: Creative Commons
> Attribution 3.0, Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 or GNU
> Free Documentation License. It could estimulate more users than now.
> It's my opinion.

You missed the reference manual rewrite effort (which is now in
remission mostly because of an extremely depressing lack of user


That is GNU FDL.

> Really how many people are using ConTeXt and how many developers are here?
> For example, how many people are subscribing in this list: it could
> tells us what's the number of users.

About 500, IIRC.


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