Annotation of wikisrc/projects/project/apropos.mdwn, revision 1.2
1.1 jmmv 1: [[!template id=project
3: title="Apropos replacement based on mandoc and SQLite's FTS"
10: [Jörg Sonnenberger](mailto:joerg@NetBSD.org)
1.2 ! jmmv 13: category="userland"
! 14: difficulty="easy"
1.1 jmmv 15: duration="3 months"
18: NetBSD ships a lot of useful documentation in the form of manual pages.
19: Finding the right manual page can be difficult though.
20: If you look for a library function, it will sometimes fail, because it is part of a larger manual page and doesn't have a MLINKS entry.
21: If you look for a program, but don't know the exact name, it can be hard to find as well.
23: Historically, the content of the NAME section of each manual page has been extracted and put into a special file.
24: The apropos command has been used to search this file based on keywords.
25: This brings severe limitations as it restricts the list of potential matches significantly and requires very good descriptions of the content of a manual page in typically one line.
27: The goal of this project is to provide a modern replacement based on the [Full Text Search of SqLite](http://sqlite.org/fts3.html).
28: The most basic version of the new apropos builds an index from the text output of [mandoc](http://mdocml.bsd.lv/mandoc.1.html) and queries it using appropriate SQL syntax.
29: Some basic form of position indications should be provided as well (e.g. line number).
31: A more advanced version could use the mandoc parser directly too.
32: This would easily allow relatively precise position marks for the HTML version of manual pages.
33: It would also allow weighting the context of a word.
34: Consider Google's preference of URLs that contain the keywords or documents containing them in the head lines as an example.
36: Another idea is to use the index for directly handling manual page aliases.
37: This could replace the symbolic links currently used via the MLINKS mechanism.
38: The aliases can be derived automatically from the .Nm macros in the manual page.
42: [[!tag gsoc]]
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