12. Related standards and practices

The tools are coming together, if slowly, to edit and format DocBook markup. But DocBook itself is a means, not an end. We'll need other standards besides DocBook itself to accomplish the searchable-documentation-database objective I laid out at the beginning of this document. There are two big issues: document cataloguing and metadata.

The Scrollkeeper project aims directly to meet this need. It provides a simple set of script hooks that can be used by package install and uninstall productions to register and unregister their documentation into and out of a shared, searchable system-wide database.

Scrollkeeper uses the Open Metadata Format. This is a standard for indexing open-source documentation analogous to a library card-catalog system. The idea is to support rich search facilities that use the card-catalog metadata as well as the source text of the documentation itself.