[tex-live] bibtex's max_print_line

Robin Fairbairns Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk
Fri Feb 12 16:29:25 CET 2010

Manuel Pégourié-Gonnard <mpg at elzevir.fr> wrote:

> Oren Patashnik a écrit :
> > My current plan is pretty much as Karl suggests here, where a "known
> > good place" is tentatively set to be defined as white space (but not
> > including the TeX tie character ~).  One issue I still need to check,
> > notes suggest, is whether Bill Gates's (evil) decision to allow spaces
> > in file names means that breaking at that space in a url (if it's
> > allowed in a url) will somehow mess things up.  I assume not, but as I
> > say, I want to check to make sure.
> > 
> For the record, according to RFC 3986, a URI (hence a URL) can't contain a
> literal space (ascii 32) character: such characters must be percent-encoded when
> forming the URI.
> Now, I'm not sure it's the question here. The problem with URLs is that they may
> be very long strings (longer than max_print_line), so bibtex should be able to
> ignore max_print_line when no "known good place" for line-breaking is found.
> > So can someone who really knows this stuff tell me whether breaking at
> > a whitespace character will ever be a real problem?  (I know it's
> > possible to redefine things in TeX to make all hell break loose, but
> > I'm not counting that as a real problem.)
> Well, if url.sty is used, it seems to me that the "argument" of the \url command
> is read verbatim, and it is never ok to break inside something which is read
> verbatim. On the other hand, as mentioned above, there should be no space in
> (conforming) URLs, so this problem could possibly be ignored (and anyway, the
> current behaviour already is incompatible with verbatim reading).

the url package copes correctly with bibtex's (established) line breaking
technique: it ignores the "%" and the end of line.  (details in the doc
show that feature appeared in v 1.6, jun 2002.)

quite how it would react to oren's proposed new setup is (currently)
more than i would understand.  however, we already know that spaces
shouldn't appear in urls.


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