PDF version of handbook

Justin C. Sherrill justin at shiningsilence.com
Wed Mar 22 21:05:41 PST 2006

On Wed, March 22, 2006 9:39 pm, Jeremy C. Reed wrote:

> I think we need to decide on what is wanted. I agree that the FreeBSD
> Handbook in two unorganized (in my opinion) volumes is too long.

Do you see this as a replacement for the Handbook that we have imported? 
There's a User's Guide for DragonFly sitting in CVS that I had started
before the import of the Handbook with some similar goals - for instance,
framing the book around the tasks people perform, rather than abstrat

> Once we have a good outline here, we can commit to docs and begin merging
> in the content we want and writing new content.

Can we start with Docbook/XML, if we're going to use Docbook?  (and I
would assume we are.)

I have to admit, the FreeBSD Handbook is an excellent resource because of
its size, but continuing to use a Handbook based off of it puts us in the
position of always having the second-best version of something.

> (More important to me: would we have at least 100 people purchase a low
> cost printed book?)

A 200-page 6x9 perfect-bound black-and-white softcover would cost ~$650 to
print if you use lulu.com, for instance.  At a price point of $20, the
printing costs would be made back at about 50 sales, what with the cut the
printer gets.  The sales can certainly be made if book copies are
schlepped to conventions, a distributor is found, and so on.  Just putting
it on a web page somewhere won't get this not-yet-existing book sold.

I've seen printing costs discussed before in terms of comics; the answer
is almost always "print it locally and ship it yourself", in order to make
a profit on a small run.  I'd virutally guarantee I can find lower-cost
local print options; I live in the same town as Kodak and Xerox's global
headquarters, after all.

If we did sell it and actually recoup costs, where would profit go?  The
next print run?  (That is when having a DragonFly non-profit entity would
be helpful.)

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