[latexrefman] TeX format

Vincent Belaïche vincent.belaiche at gmail.com
Wed Sep 16 23:06:50 CEST 2020

The whole confusion lies in whether we want to name :

* the technique that allows to load significantly quicker a large set
a macros at startup, whatever this set of macros is LaTeX, PlainTeX,
AMSTeX, etc…, by means of a binary file called a (TeX) format file ---
where TeX here just means that the file is *read* by some TeX engine,
and does not mean that the file contains a set of macro for PlainTeX,
* the format file corresponding to some specific set of macros itself
(LaTeX, PlainTeX, AMSTeX, etc…)

There would be no confusion with my terminology if I also had stated that
* the format file is named a TeX format, or just a format for shorter
when there is no ambiguity that we speak about this sort of binary
data, and
* one TeX format is the PlainTeX TeX format (in TeX by Topic it is
insisted that this format is just named « plain », because it is
supposed to be a foundation for further formats, but frankly speaking
I don't like using a common word to name a unique thing, even if this
thing is supposedly simple).


Le mar. 15 sept. 2020 à 23:43, Karl Berry <karl at freefriends.org> a écrit :
>     I think that for accuracy we should remove this @cindex
> I changed the index entries to:
> @cindex @TeX{} format (@code{.fmt}) files
> @cindex @LaTeX{} format @(code{.fmt}) files
> "LaTeX TeX format" makes sense in its way, but I think it would be
> confusing for readers to me. -k

More information about the latexrefman mailing list.