[texhax] Changing \skip\footins locally

Uwe Lück uwe.lueck at web.de
Wed Feb 11 23:28:43 CET 2009

At 16:41 11.02.09, Yannis Haralambous wrote:
>Le 11 févr. 09 à 16:16, Uwe Lück a écrit :
> > At 12:12 11.02.09, Yannis Haralambous wrote:
> >> I would like to fit an extra line of text in a specific page with
> >> footnotes. When I attempt to change \skip\footins on that page
> >> only, it has no effect whatsoever. I realized that only when I change 
> \skip
> >> \footins in the LaTeX preamble it has some effect on the typeset result.
> >>
> >> How can I change locally (for one page only) the blank space
> >> between text and footnote so that I can fit an additional line of text 
> on that
> >> page,
> >> without changing footnote behaviour for the rest of the document?
> >
> > Since pagebreaking, including breaking footnotes, depends on quite a
> > number of parameters, notably penalty values, and on the special
> > distribution of demerits in the main vertical list, it is not easy to 
> help you here.
> > E.g., the line you want to have on the same page may have a footnote 
> whose
> > first line just doesn't fit on the same page.
>No, no. I know that such an action should remain exceptional, and this
>is what I need: an exceptional way to decrease \footins on a single page.

Yes, we are talking about the same thing.

> > Perhaps it would work to decrease \dimen\footins.
>Is \dimen\footins different than \skip\footins???

\skip\footins is white space, \dimen\footins is maximum height for 
footnotes, TeXbook p. 122f.

> > On a final stage of the work, I would just try  \pagebreak and 
> \nopagebreak (I am not sure
> > about \enlargethispage, is it still supported?). But we know too little 
> of your situation.
>Several people suggested I use \enlargethispage. I think you don't
>understand the problem: I want to insert an extra line of text,
>_without moving neither the text upwards, nor the footnotes downwards_.

Clearly; as too \enlargethispage, I have myself never understood what it 
really does, neither from the documentation nor from the code, I only 
experienced that it sometimes allows some extra text line on the same page.

>\pagebreak works if you want lesser lines, I need an extra line.

No, \pagebreak may also add a line, see next:

>\nopagebreak has never worked.

I know this. I want to have line n+1 together with n on the current page, I 
issue \nopagebreak in line n, it goes to the next page together with line 
n+1. And so on the more \nopagebreak I try. But often (I believe to 
remember) I succeeded by forcing the page break between line n+1 and n+2 to 
get line n+1 on the current page. Only this may convince TeX that breaking 
after n+1 is better than breaking after n. This may have to do with the 
fact that negative/small penalties override positive/big penalties (a real 

>If I use a box to force the extra line of text, the footnote is broken.

If you want to avoid even this, you seem to demand something very 
difficult. Unless you accept negative \skip\footins (I had a similar effect 
in my early months with manyfoot), you ... might increase the shrink of of 

>I really need a means to fiddle with \footins on a single page. And I
>have the impression that (La)TeX does not allow fine-enough control on

Being puzzled by (La)TeX's page-breaking is a common feeling, that's my 
impression. (And from 2003 to 2008, I earnt my living with manyfoot.) That 
is why I find

     Happy TeXing!

so cynical. More outright, as we Germans say:

     "Hals- und Beinbruch!"
     ("Happy breaking your neck and leg!" Cf. 

My original main message was: I don't believe in general rules here! You 
might rather send those two pages! Or a starting point for a remote 
diagnosis might be the \tracingpages outcome according to TeXbook p. 122f.

"Hals- und Beinbruch!"


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