23 Jun 2002 Ilan   » (Master)

Dear diary,

here's what I've written so far of the AUHDL. I hope to get more down soon.

The Anti-User Hostility Documentation License.

Traditional open-source and free software documentation is meant to deprive an end user of their basic freedom to understand how to get work done with their software. This deprivation of freedom is distilled into a form of oppression, where the only answer to a question born of confusing documentation is "Read The Fine Manual". Further silliness ensues when a world ensconced in 32-bit color and interactive multi-media is eschewed for a world of text-only documentation, whose only attempt at graphic amelioration is pathetic use of more text. We of Clarux feel that the freedom to oppress end-users is not a valid freedom.

It is painfully clear that those who feel it is acceptable to produce documentation that oppresses end-users either through its lack of clarity, lack of examples, or simple lack of existence clearly do not deserve to use, distribute, or take credit for documentation created by those who feel differently. It is the goal of the Anti-User Hostility Documentation License to promote open, accessible, and understandable documentation and thereby create a more open, accessible, and understandable world of technology.


1. All documents produced under the AUHDL must have at least three graphic elements. A graphic element is defined as a diagram, drawing, or a computer monitor screenshot. Any modification to a document protected under the AUHDL that reduces the number of graphic elements by less than 3 is prohibited. By July 1, 2003, the requirement for graphic elements will be extended to the use of at least 3 colors. Modification of a document protected under the AUHDL that reduces the number of colors used for graphic elements by less than three is prohibited.

1.5 While not enforced, it is encouraged that writers of documentation licensed under the AUHDL make their documents accessible to users with visual impairments. It is suggested that authors do not rely solely on the use of the colors to convey relationships, as a significant population has red-green color blindness. It is also suggested that the navigation and display of relationships between pieces of information accommodate blind users.

2. Use of ASCII or Unicode text as a substitute for graphic elements (the practice informally known as "ASCII art") is hereby prohibited from any document protected under the AUHDL. Any modification of an AUHDL document that includes "ASCII art" is expressly prohibited.

3. Any person, company, or entity that wishes to distribute or link to documentation licensed under the AUHDL license must agree not to distribute, link to, or post on the internet the following documentation formats:

a) HOW-TO's.
b) TexInfo
c) Any text-only document.

I've still got bunches to add, but it's a start.

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