[pdftex] Alternatives to emp.sty?

Magnus Lie Hetland magnus at hetland.org
Tue Nov 19 23:42:24 CET 2002

After using pdfLaTeX and MetaPost together for a while, I find they
are a very natural match -- and therefore I'd like to be able to use
MetaPost in the same way as the standard picture environment. Now, the
emp package provides this functionality to some extent, but there are
some points that I wish were different:

  - You must (apparently) import graphicx and declare a graphics rule
    to deal with the numeric suffixes of the a utogenerated files.

  - You have to enclose the emp environments in an empfile environment
    that seems superfluous to me, and (IMO) could probably be

  - You have to manually process the autogenerated .mp file(s).

What I'd like is a package that you could import, and that would then
let you use an environment like the emp environment (without the
empfile environment) and that automatically processed the files
(somewhat like pdftricks). Running LaTeX more than once, if needed,
would be fine -- I'm pretty used to that :)

Now... Is there such a beast out there somewhere, or is emp.sty the
only one of its kind? (I know that ConTeXt has excellent support for
MetaPost, but I'm not quite ready to make a switch :) Would the
changes I suggest be hard to implement? (It would, of course, be easy
enough to write a program that extracted the relevant snippets and
took care of running metapost and pdflatex, but that's another

On the other hand, perhaps separate MetaPost files and a good Makefile
is adequate... :]

Magnus Lie Hetland        Practical Python          The Anygui Project
http://hetland.org        http://ppython.com        http://anygui.org

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