[luatex] macros to invoke lua in LaTeX

Robin Fairbairns Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk
Fri Mar 6 09:54:11 CET 2009

Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> wrote:

> On 5 March 2009 Heiko Oberdiek wrote:
>  > On Thu, Mar 05, 2009 at 11:07:51PM +0100, Reinhard Kotucha wrote:
>  > 
>  > > Regarding namespaces: It's a good idea at first glance.  But I don't
>  > > think there is any need to be concerned about macro packages people
>  > > write in the future.  Macro writers have to read the specifications
>  > > anyway.  They have to read the TeXbook if they want to support Knuth's
>  > > tex, they have to read the pdfTeX manual if they want to support
>  > > pdftex, and they have to read the LuaTeX manual if they want to support
>  > > Luatex.  Same for e-TeX, XeTeX, Omega, and derivates.
>  > 
>  > Another reason for prefixes. As package author I wouldn't want
>  > to check all engines for name clashes.
> You have to check anyway.  At least if you want to support all
> engines.  e-TeX provides new primitives, why can't luatex do the same?

as i already said: that's fine for you, me or heiko.

the concern is for the non-cognoscenti.

>  > Also it's quite difficult to check future name clashes, especially
>  > for user land macro names.
> Please try LaTeX's \newcommand .

don't be silly: do you suppose any of us do otherwise, whenever

>  > > Hans already explained why new primitives don't break old macro
>  > > packages.  So, where is the problem?
>  > 
>  > Mixing old with new packages.
> Forget the old stuff.  Nobody forces anyone to process old documents
> with luatex.

pshaw.  nobody forces anyone to use pdftex with their old documents, but
anyone who updates their distribution (e.g., because they've gained a
new machine) ends up with little choice other than recompiling.

*still*, we get people confused by that.

it would be nice to have luatex as the default engine, some time in the
future.  which is why people such as heiko and i are concerned to
minimise problems.

> You can't expect any progress if you insist on compatibility with
> stuff written three decades ago.

sure, but it's as well to take precautions, so as to minimise problems.

i, for one, had never anticipated all the problems with the switch to
pdftex; i bet there were those who did, and if this sort of discussion
had happened then, we might have avoided the worst of the problems.


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