[texhax] Ref. Man. Bausum [was tabbing]

Uwe Lück uwe.lueck at web.de
Thu Sep 14 12:19:39 CEST 2006

At 02:27 14.09.06, Karl Berry wrote:
>        *** TeX Reference Manual by David Bausum ***
>Does it go far beyond TeX for the Impatient and (especially) TeX by Topic?
>I kind of had the impression they were more or less in the same space.

This was my question! More precisely:

First, two examples for refuting the claim on the back cover
of my copy of The TeXbook -- that it were a "Complete User's Guide ..."

1. The TeXbook's description of \accent makes me guess
an aligning macro for which \accent is a hard-wired shorthand
-- but I can't decide from the TeXbook whether my guess is correct.

2. Once I wondered what happens with an \insert box
when the output routine doesn't print it -- my guess that it is
emptied was wrong, David Kastrup told me better
-- but I couldn't read this from the TeXbook.

I have had a look at TeX by Topic. To me it seems that it is
just a sober extract from the TeXbook -- no jokes, no
wide scattering of informations on how a command works --
not telling anything that you can't read (with more effort)
from the TeXbook. So, e.g., I couldn't find in TeX by Topic
a more accurate answer to my above \accent question.

W. Appelts German Book contains a (fairly) complete
Syntax of TeX -- this may go beyond the TeXbook;
but it has many other wide lacunas.

I don't expect that TeX for the Impatient tries to be

Now (as I should have told earlier)



   The TeX Reference Manual is the first comprehensive
   reference manual written by a programmer for programmers.

Has anybody here checked this?



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