[XeTeX] Localized XeLaTeX: was Greek XeLaTeX

Paul Isambert zappathustra at free.fr
Sat Oct 16 17:47:15 CEST 2010

  Le 16/10/2010 16:43, Herbert Schulz a écrit :
> On Oct 16, 2010, at 9:36 AM, Philip Taylor (Webmaster, Ret'd) wrote:
>> Wolfgang Schuster wrote:
>>> Another way is to use the string library from lua to replace μμ with mm:
>> Is "μμ" really the Greek abbreviation for millimetres ?  If so,
>> how do the Greeks abbreviate micrometers (= microns, "μ") ?
>> Philip Taylor
> Howdy,
> I thought the symbols that are used for different units are set by international standards. Do you really want to spend time localizing something such that nobody else will ever understand it?

The people speaking the same language as you is not exactly ``nobody 

> Don't you think everyone should attempt to learn the standards so we can talk to each other?

Yes, but suppose you're Electra, the OP's nine year old daughter; not 
only do you have to learn (pseudo-)words you don't understand, but you 
have to learn them with an alphabet that's not yours. Plus you have to 
learn (La)TeX, of course.

I think there should be experts, perhaps, that speak an international 
language, be it English or Latin or Warlpiri, but that solutions should 
be found to help people that don't want to or can't learn that 
international language; and experts should be bridges between an 
international community and a local one. It's easy to say "Just learn 
English!", but what if, as Khaled has remarked, TeX and its commands 
were written in Arabic? I for one wouldn't be using it, simply because I 
would have to learn everything as ideograms, which would be too much 
when added to the burden of learning TeX itself. And I guess I wouldn't 
be the only one in that case.

I think we'll be more of a community when we share the program, although 
not the language -- than in the current state where people simply do not 
learn the program, because of its language, and share nothing.

As for the OP's demand, I'm disappointed Philip hasn't devised the 
obvious solution yet (although I haven't read all the messages): use 
plain TeX! Since you'll have to write most macros yourself anyway, you 
can write them in Greek! (Rewriting plain.tex in Greek, and adding a 
translation of all primitives, shouldn't take too long.) Plus, since 
nobody is going to be able to help you for most of your problems, you 
don't mind if they can't read your control sequences :)


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