[OS X TeX] TeXpad (LaTeX iPad editor app) dev's blog post on Mac OS X appstore sandboxing

Chris Goedde cgg.lists at gmail.com
Wed Apr 4 19:30:36 CEST 2012

On Apr 4, 2012, at 12:16 PM, Herbert Schulz wrote:

> Howdy,
> I don't think the problem is with the document bundle but rather that the sandbox will not allow calls to UNIX level programs and the TeX Distribution is, of course UNIX level. (Please scream at me if I'm off base here!!!)
> As far as I know that means that TeXShop can never be distributed through the App Store. I assume that the folks that make TeXPad for iOS have an OS X app to interact with the changes made to files (don't they use Dropbox to transfer the file) and they are distributing that app via the App Store. So it would mean they'd have to distribute it themselves.

I don't think the situation is as dire as all that. After all, Xcode now comes through the App store (though of course Apple may break its own rules to make that happen), and the development tools that used to be relatively scattered through the file system is now all inside the Xcode bundle. I don't see why the same couldn't be done with LaTeX et. al. I don't think that there's any technical reason LaTeX and TeXShop could not co-exist with sandboxing, although their architecture would need some changing, and the feature set would probably be somewhat different.

Of course doing that would be a huge amount of work, but I think it's a goal worth thinking about for the long term. It's probably too soon to really start on such a project, though (even if someone were so inclined, and had the time), because the app store rules and sandboxing will mostly likely be evolving over the next couple of years. But it's something that will be clearly worth thinking about eventually, given the path that Apple is on (for good reason, IMO).


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