[tex-live] Technical showstoppers for TL2003

Vladimir Volovich vvv at vsu.ru
Sun Sep 14 02:33:46 CEST 2003

"KB" == Karl Berry writes:

 KB> Note that last line, "installer has chosen".
 KB> What do you think?

i'm inclined to agree. the corresponding section 49 from tex.web is:

@ The first 128 strings will contain 95 standard ASCII characters, and the
other 33 characters will be printed in three-symbol form like `\.{\^\^A}'
unless a system-dependent change is made here. Installations that have
an extended character set, where for example |xchr[@'32]=@t\.{\'^^Z\'}@>|,
would like string @'32 to be the single character @'32 instead of the
three characters @'136, @'136, @'132 (\.{\^\^Z}). On the other hand,
even people with an extended character set will want to represent string
@'15 by \.{\^\^M}, since @'15 is |carriage_return|; the idea is to
produce visible strings instead of tabs or line-feeds or carriage-returns
or bell-rings or characters that are treated anomalously in text files.
Unprintable characters of codes 128--255 are, similarly, rendered
The boolean expression defined here should be |true| unless \TeX\
internal code number~|k| corresponds to a non-troublesome visible
symbol in the local character set.  An appropriate formula for the
extended character set recommended in {\sl The \TeX book\/} would, for
example, be `|k in [0,@'10..@'12,@'14,@'15,@'33,@'177..@'377]|'.
If character |k| cannot be printed, and |k<@'200|, then character |k+@'100| or
|k-@'100| must be printable; moreover, ASCII codes |[@'41..@'46,
@'60..@'71, @'141..@'146, @'160..@'171]| must be printable.
Thus, at least 80 printable characters are needed.
@:TeXbook}{\sl The \TeX book@>
@^character set dependencies@>
@^system dependencies@>
@<Character |k| cannot be printed@>=
  (k<" ")or(k>"~")

perhaps it would be good to be able to make TeX behave according to
this default specified by Knuth, as well as the suggested

maybe this can be done via texmf.cnf as a system-wide setting, - then
it will be possible to get whatever behavior one wants by default -
either the one suggested in the TeXbook, or the "full-8-bit-output".
maybe TeX should read some TCX file, say, default.tcx which will be
either cp8bit or will make only the chars in the range 32-126
printable (but it should not be acceptable to use non-ID maps which
contain nontrivial maps as system-wide setting)...


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