[tex-live] encTeX, 8bit encoding, ...

Olaf Weber olaf at infovore.xs4all.nl
Tue Mar 23 22:29:42 CET 2004

At the risk of restarting one of the recurrent flamewars: For the work
on web2c 7.5.3 I've (finally) merged encTeX in my source tree (for
various reasons I didn't simply apply Petr's patch) and now I'm pretty
close to the point where final changes can be made or left for the
next round.

The upcoming web2c 7.5.3 handles the input encoding issue is handled
as follows:

- If a TCX file is specified it is read early in the startup sequence.

- An encTeX-enabled format contains xord/xchr/xprn data.  If a TCX
  file was specified, this data will be ignored (with a message) in
  favour of the already-read contents of the TCX file.

- On output using one of the \write operators, the xprn array is used
  to determine whether the ^^-notation is to be used.

- On output to the log or terminal, the locale-dependent C isprint()
  function is used.

Variations that could be implemented instead:

- Disable the locale-dependent code, and always use xprn.

- Always store xord/xchr/xprn in the format, not just for encTeX.

- A "genuine" -8bit switch that installs the identity xord/xchr
  mapping and makes everything printable.

The last is effectively a shorthand for --translate-file=8bit.tcx
where where 8bit.tcx implements this mapping (cp8bit.tcx does less
than its name promises).

Olaf Weber

               (This space left blank for technical reasons.)

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