[tex-live] Re: Re: free software, DFSG

David Kastrup dak at gnu.org
Sat Jun 5 15:14:53 CEST 2004

Giuseppe Bilotta <bilotta78 at hotpop.com> writes:

> David Kastrup wrote:
> > Giuseppe Bilotta <bilotta78 at hotpop.com> writes:
> > 
> > > David Kastrup wrote:
> > > > I am working with all of the junk.  Who do I ask for new
> > > > stuff?  I want John to get Omega into useful state.  It is a
> > > > waste of resources to have LaTeX, PDFTeX, eTeX and others all
> > > > forked off from something which does not even deal with
> > > > character sets in a sane way.
> > > 
> > > I would have never expected you to make the mistake to stack
> > > LaTeX (a format) together with pdfTeX and eTeX (engines).
> > 
> > Because TeX does not deal with character sets in a sane way, LaTeX
> > has to bumble around.  Of course it is a mistake to have LaTeX
> > deal with what the TeX engine should cater for itself.
> > 
> > But it is not my mistake.
> LaTeX and ConTeXt walk around the problems with different
> methods. Not that I see why TeX should care at all about character
> sets.

Because it writes messages to the terminal and to temporary files that
need to get reread.  Because it outputs the contents of boxes, like
with overfull box messages and when using \showbox, and it would be
nice if the output was at all readable.  Because decoding stuff like
input characters is inefficient, error-prone, and fragile.  Because it
makes it impossible to have working non-English error messages,
terminal output, control sequence names, labels and so on.

Need I continue?  Surprising that I should have to explain this to
the author of Aleph.

David Kastrup, Kriemhildstr. 15, 44793 Bochum

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