[tex-live] problem with babel package

Robin Fairbairns Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk
Fri May 20 11:16:07 CEST 2011

Zdenek Wagner <zdenek.wagner at gmail.com> wrote:

> 2011/5/20 Philipp Stephani <st_philipp at yahoo.de>:
> >
> > Am 20.05.2011 um 09:32 schrieb Norbert Preining:
> >
> >> So are the Debian packagers, namely me, acting both upstrream and
> >> as Debian packager.
> >>
> >> If not more people step forward and actually *help* then it will be
> >> always like that. I simply have limited time and need to support
> >> the released versions in Debian with fixes, plus write tlmgr.
> >
> > I think that often the old versions are fine, and package authors
> > should at least try to support the versions that were present in the
> > last two TL releases. I don't think that recommending Linux users to
> > always install TL manually is a good idea. 
> What do you mean by support? For instance, I found a bug in my
> package, fixed it, posted on CTAN and after a few days it was in TL.
> Now if somebody encounters the very same bug, what should I do? I can
> only refer him or her to a new version where the bug is fixed. What
> else can I do?

istm an impossible dichotomy has been proposed here -- either people
manage their own stuff (by taking packages direct from ctan or from the
tl repository) or they have no way of correcting bugs.

a third alternative would be to publish patches.  this is equally
distasteful, since the na\"if user will either patch a copy of
the package that goes with their document, or they'll incorporate
patching code into their document.  this makes the document immune to
any later improvement of the package.

note that, by default, many people's tex live won't change in the
lifetime of their system: here, for example, that will be 3 years for a
phd student (who finishes on time[*]) or 5 years or more for the
"ordinary" member of faculty.  so i could in principle be answering
questions about a tex system from 2006 (fortunately, such questions tend
not to leak onto the internet, since most people know to ask me).

we have a situation here where support of personal widnoze machines is
potentially far better, under miktex at least.  if the user needs a
package that hir system doesn't have, miktex might be able to download
it without any intervention.

now, i really must go and do today's tl update for this machine...


[*] ha ha ha

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