[tex-live] last weekend changes

Hans Hagen pragma at wxs.nl
Sat Mar 27 23:26:07 CET 2004

At 19:44 27/03/2004, Thomas Esser wrote:

>People are actually already using pdftex features for producing dvi,
>e.g. character protruding. So, the problem which we are discussing is
>nothing theoretical and already existing. That's why we already have
>good code which is aware of the fact that pdftex is running in dvi mode
>(geometry, ifpdf, graphics.cfg, color.cfg, ...).

indeed protruding and hz are available in dvi mode as well, but they 
actually belong in a different domain, say xtx extensions or so; currently 
thanh is splitting up pdftex in such parts.

>In fact, the whole teTeX distribution contains only two "broken" files:
>changebar.sty and ltnews.cls. The authors are notified, so hope is that
>these wil soon be fixed. User's code is a different matter, but we can
>give them a simple one-liner solution to get their document compile again.
>And, if they really want, they can still go back to good-old tex by a
>simple change in theit fmtutil configuration.

maybe a clever grep will surface code in plain tex files ... (like the cweb 
styles, eplain, texinfo, etc)

of course, there is still the problem of users with their own files then; 
and some may have old code and be unaware of changes in the engine and run 
into problems (imagine tex running on some server with a shared (remote) 
bin tree, with the styles written some 4 years ago, and then someone 
uploads the new tex live ... who will notice that old files with embedded 
\ifx\pdfannot... will fail?

> > What is wrong with it?  It provides transparent compatibility.  I don't
> > understand why you think it is bad.
>Why are we making that move to pdfetex? To save a few bytes? I don't
>think so. My impression was that the main idea was to be able to add
>new primitives (e.g. \pdftexbanner). We can do this with pdftex, but we
>can't do this with TeX.

sure, but we don't need to prefix them \pdf, we can reserve a new prefix, 
say \xtxbanner or maybe \xpdftexbanner thereby suggesting that they go 
beyond pdf output: \xpdftexbanner, \xpdfmapfile, \xpdfmapline ...


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