[metapost] Does MetaPost catch on?

Werner LEMBERG wl at gnu.org
Thu Sep 9 07:32:47 CEST 2010

> Though admittedly TeX's macro language isn't straightforward, I fear
> that troff's macro language is even less appealing:

Well, yes.  However, the limitation to use only one- or two-character
names does no longer exist, and if you use long names (and the .eo
request to avoid double backslashes), it doesn't look too bad:

  .de doc-print-prefixes
  .  while (\n[doc-arg-limit] >= \n[doc-arg-ptr]) \{\
  .    if !(\n[doc-type\n[doc-arg-ptr]] == 4) \
  .      break
  .    nop \f[\n[doc-curr-font]]\s[\n[doc-curr-size]u]\c
  .    nop \)\*[doc-arg\n[doc-arg-ptr]]\f[]\s[0]\c
  .    nr doc-arg-ptr +1
  .  \}

> Werner, you are very familiar with both, troff and TeX.  Which one
> would you recommend to people who never used a batch-mode typesetter
> before?

I would suggest a well-defined subset of LaTeX (or maybe ConTeXt; the
latter I don't know at all) since there are (a) more users who can
help and (b) the tools for LaTeX are more advanced.  In particular, an
editor which supports coloured syntax helps a lot.  The roff mode of
Emacs sucks, unfortunately.  Ditto for Joe, to name another editor.


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