# [texworks] Suggestions for the next TeXworks version

Stefan Löffler st.loeffler at gmail.com
Fri May 16 14:11:00 CEST 2014

Hi,

On 2014-05-13 13:13, Lukas Császár wrote:
> I have ideas for a new version of TeXworks and would like to share
> them with you:
> accordingly!)

Thanks for sharing your ideas. In fact, this is a good address.
Alternatively, you can also create "issues" (which, unfortunately, gives
a slightly wrong idea) on the Google Code page

> o) A list of labels that collects all labels a user has set (in a
> document/in all opened documents) to faciliate their use and to gain
> an overview. Additionally, a user-definable comment for each label in
> the list could be added to keep track of the elements they're
> referencing to.

If I understand you correctly, this is already implemented (on a
per-document basis). Just click on Window > Show > Tags. There, all
\chapter's, \section's, etc. should be listed, but you can also create
custom labels using a line starting with "%:" (e.g., "%:Where I left off").
This currently does not work on all open documents, but project support
(which should, in fact, allow to group several files, open or not, into
a big project) is planned for the future. However, this will require
some rather extensive code-changes as the current code was not designed
with projects in mind.

> o) An option (or hotkey) that puts marked content into curly braces
> (and places the cursor in front of the opening brace). This could be
> useful if one decides to precede code with a makro after it has been

As Alain has already posted, this is very easy to achieve with scripts.

> o) Is it possible to include lookbehinds to the available regex features?

Unfortunately, no (not easily, anyway ;)). TeXworks uses the regular
expression parser that comes with Qt
(http://qt-project.org/doc/qt-5/qregexp.html), and that does not support
lookbehinds.

> o) When using MikTeX, there's an pre-defined typesetting option that
> includes pdfLaTeX, BibTeX and MakeIndex. There is no such option for
> TeX Live. Is it possible that an upcoming TeXworks-version provides
> such a typesetting "script"?

Hm...
Right now, Tw ships with a list of predefined tools. This list has grown
historically, but generally speaking, it should be comprised of tools
that are found on typical TeX installations by default (this is the
reason, for example, that latexmk is not included, as that requires
Anyway, what you suggest would not be a standard tool (as in: a single
program provided by the TeX distro, e.g. latex.exe or something) but
rather a combination of tools (with more or less magical output
parsing). This could be realized as shell/batch/whatever script (see
that is not platform independent. Therefore, we did not pursue that road
so far (for the standard Tw release, anyway).
The MiKTeX developers, on the other hand, have chosen to modify that
list of tools to tailor it towards their needs. That's the beauty of
open source software. So the best option for this would be if the
TeXLive developers would do the same (after all, they know best what
additional scripts are available in their distro).
Then again, since there are several tools/scripts listed on
quite easy for users to amend the list.

> o) Is it possible to include a "refresh"-button that updates the
> TeXworks-auto-completion files used in the current session, so that
> changes in the user-auto-completion files become available without
> closing and restarting the program? Furthermore, should this feature,
> in general, get more "attention" in the user-interface?

That's a very nice idea (even in a more general sense) and yes, the
auto-completion should get more attention.
As far as the auto-completion is concerned, there are plans on the wish
list to pep it up a bit, e.g., using a drop-down list with
possibilities, optionally with displaying some helpful information
(e.g., definition of the command) alongside it, as other TeX editors do.
As above, before we can do this, the plan is to implement a rather
general interface for "suggestions", where we could tie in the spell
checker, the auto-completion, maybe at some point \ref and \cite label
completion, possibly scriptable suggestions, etc.

> o) This one could be a "personal problem", but: In the Mac-version of
> TeXworks, scrolling in the pdf-preview is way too fast. Moving  a few
> millimeters on the touch pad in order to scroll covers tens of pages,
> which makes it impossible to navigate via touch pad. (Happend on two
> MacBooks so far.)

Unfortuantely, I don't have a Mac to test and debug this. However, there
will be a new pdf previewer (with many new features, such as continuous
scroll) in the near future (near is always relative, but this one is
mostly coded already and just needs to be tied into the existing code).
This was largely developed by Charlie Sharpsteen, which uses a Mac,
AFAIK. So I hope the problem will be resolved there.

Cheers,
Stefan