[tex-live] Ftuture state of XeTeX in TeXLive

Vafa Khalighi vafaklg at gmail.com
Fri Oct 28 14:54:49 CEST 2011

My question in the first place had nothing to do with the development of
XeTeX. In fact it is a long time that there has been no development for
XeTeX and I have no problem with that.  What scares me is that XeTeX may be
unusable in say several years.

On Fri, Oct 28, 2011 at 11:49 PM, Vafa Khalighi <vafaklg at gmail.com> wrote:

> That is not entirely true. Should the users of TeX (those who use Knuth's
> original TeX engine) support the development of Knuth TeX or move to another
> engine just because Knuth no longer extends TeX and he only fixes bugs?
> On Fri, Oct 28, 2011 at 11:33 PM, George N. White III <gnwiii at gmail.com>wrote:
>> On Fri, Oct 28, 2011 at 8:58 AM, Mojca Miklavec
>> <mojca.miklavec.lists at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > On Fri, Oct 28, 2011 at 13:19, Vafa Khalighi wrote:
>> >> Hi
>> >> Since Jonathan has no time any more for coding XeTeX, then what will be
>> the
>> >> state of XeTeX in TeX distributions such as TeXLive? will be XeTeX
>> removed
>> >> from TeXLive just like Aleph and Omega (in favour of LuaTeX) were
>> removed
>> >> from TeXLive?
>> >
>> > Omega was remove because it was buggy, unmaintained, but most
>> > important of all: hardly usable. It took a genius to figure out how to
>> > use it, while XeTeX is exactly the contrary. It simplifies everything
>> > in comparison to pdfTeX. Omega was low quality and Aleph was
>> > deprecated also because LuaTeX now contains all functionality that was
>> > worth keeping.
>> >
>> > There is no reason to remove XeTeX yet (unless it gets merged with
>> > LuaTeX one day, but that won't happen yet), but it is true that a
>> > maintainer is desperately needed. If nothing else, if nobody adapts
>> > the code, it might stop working with next version of Mac OS X or a
>> > version after that.
>> If I have an old house that meets my needs but has substandard
>> plumbing and wiring, I may be in desperate need of a contractor
>> who can bring it up to current standards, or I can tear it down and
>> build a new house.  Both options are expensive, but renovation
>> involves greater uncertainties requires more skills than does new
>> construction, so unless there are other considerations (house is a
>> historical landmark), new construction is often better than renovation.
>> Clearly XeTeX fills a need, but that doesn't mean it deserves ongoing
>> development.   The groups that rely on XeTeX have to either find a way
>> to support development or switch to a new engine, which at present is
>> LuaTeX.   There has already been discussion of what would be needed
>> to make the changes in XeTeX, maybe there needs to be discussion
>> (in LuaTeX forums) of the barriers to adoption faced by the groups who
>> currently rely on XeTeX.
>> --
>> George N. White III <aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca>
>> Head of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia
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