[tex-live] Technical showstoppers for TL2003

Vladimir Volovich vvv at vsu.ru
Sun Sep 14 00:37:54 CEST 2003

"HH" == Hans Hagen writes:

 >> I hope that TeX in TL2003 is no more dependent on locale (which
 >> would be nonsense from the document portability point of view),
 >> and by default uses the ^^ notation to output 8-bit chars,
 >> allowing to change this with the (non-standard) --translate-file
 >> option.

 HH> I don't understand this: 8-bit-in equals 8-bit-out, that's quite
 HH> portable if there is *no* translation; in my opinion any
 HH> translation makes the document unportable;

in my opinion, macro packages should write to files in encoding
independent form (e.g. like the LaTeX does) - that's really portable.

if you write as 8-bit chars, TeX will write FONT ENCODING character
which may be quite different from input encoding, so reading back
those 8-bit characters is useless.

but if you still need to write 8-bit chars - you're free to use the
--translate-file option.

the ^^-notation is standard *default* of TeX behavior as defined by
Don Knuth.

 HH> locales are an OS-thing and it's the OS that makes the document
 HH> unportable, not tex!

what i was saying that TeX run should not depend on locale: it should
be possible to get identical results on all systems independently of

 HH> Maybe the tex binary could just disable locales for file writes
 HH> (aren't file writes supposed to be binary?)

locales and ^^-notation are not the same thing... i agree that TeX's
behavior should not depend on locale. if one needs to use binary
output to files, you can use TCX...


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