Chemical structures with plain TeX

Paulo Ney de Souza pauloney at
Fri Jul 5 13:03:25 CEST 2019


I am going to post your answer outside my door ....  :)

Paulo Ney

On Fri, Jul 5, 2019 at 3:46 AM Taylor, P <P.Taylor at> wrote:

> Paulo Ney de Souza wrote:
> ... and tagging along with Peter's command (to see what is going on) is
> not easy because "lxprintf" is a real mess:
>   * it ides not come with any distribution
>   * there are no packages for it at the repositories
>   * it is not available at the standard open source repositories
>   * there is no way to (easily) automate obtaining the package and
> installing it
>   * the package (LTXML2) depends on itself for building it
> Paulo Ney
> As I wrote off-list to Peter :
> Sometimes I just want to weep.  There can be no doubt, based even on just
> the evidence above, that the Unix operating system is a very powerful tool,
> and the simple fact that one can identify all packages that do not have the
> string "LaTeX" (presumably case-insensitive) in their CTAN path is a clear
> demonstration of that fact.  And yet the entire thing is gibberish.  It
> could be Mayan, for all I know.  I could stare at it for the rest of my
> life and still not have the slightest idea how it works.  Why oh why oh why
> does someone not come up with a command-line interpreter (or as I fear you
> would call it, "a shell") that uses English verbs as its commands and
> Enqlish nouns/adjective/adverbs/etc as its qualifiers ?  How on earth is
> anyone expected to know what "-i -o" implies, especially as what it implies
> is almost certainly a function of the command to which it is applied ?  And
> why can one not apply 2>/dev/null distributively, such that it applies to
> *all* commands in the sequence rather than having to be spelled out in
> full for each.
> Algol-68 showed the world how programming languages should look, feel and
> behave; VAX/VMS did the same for operating systems.  But the world was too
> stupid to see their strengths, and abandoned them in favour of C and Unix.
> As I wrote before, I weep.
> Philip Taylor
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