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Every CAA Publication (CAP) seems to restart its page numbering when starting a new chapter. Does anyone know why they have decided to do this?

For example, the CAP413. Instead of a logical page number ordering throughout the document, you have to reference it as chapter 4, pg 4 or chapter 5, pg 2.

It makes it very difficult to reference information to others. It also makes navigating as a PDF challenging - many of the CAPs are solely in PDF format. (Often you can only view one page at a time, and it is so easy to get lost in a document which restarts its page ordering).

Is there a reason why the CAA has done this? What would be the formal or best way of referencing a CAP page?

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That's an artefact of a different era. Before computers were used to create documentation, updating large documents was difficult and expensive. People tried to reduce the workload by using chapter-page numbering. When you have to add pages to a book, chapter-page numbering allows you to replace one chapter instead of having to reprint the whole book.

Some organizations even supplied book updates as individual pages with a 'list of effective pages' so you could swap them out in your copy.

Nowadays there's no reason to keep doing this. Rebuilding a document (generate the TOC and crossreferences) is cheap, printing is cheap. You already noticed the big disadvantages of chapter-page numbering to the user.

Why they're still doing this? Inertia, probably.

How to reference them? Page 5-2 works, and if you want to be comprehensive, page 5-2 (PDF page 124).

(sorry, no references. Just lots of experience building large documents)

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    $\begingroup$ I think the UK government invented inertia. $\endgroup$ – GdD Jul 10 '20 at 7:51
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    $\begingroup$ Yep the CAA are perhaps the most backward government department technologically. I have it on fairly good authority that their very delayed "new computer system" is to replace an old system using Win95 terminals. $\endgroup$ – Jamiec Jul 10 '20 at 8:39
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    $\begingroup$ @GdD Unfortunately, Newton didn't take over the Royal Mint until a decade after inventing inertia. $\endgroup$ – chrylis -cautiouslyoptimistic- Jul 10 '20 at 17:44
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    $\begingroup$ There's still NT in places @Jamiec in the UK gov. I am not kidding. A few years ago in a a non-government client I found OS2! I thought it must have been a mis-detection, but no, it was in charge of a critical industrial control system! $\endgroup$ – GdD Jul 10 '20 at 18:13
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    $\begingroup$ @GdD: If you think that's amusing, you'll love this: In October, the United States Air Force announced that it had worked out how to launch a nuclear missile(!) without using 8-inch floppy disks. $\endgroup$ – Kevin Jul 10 '20 at 20:16

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