[tex-k] Bug in TeX

Doug McKenna doug at mathemaesthetics.com
Sun Oct 29 00:16:20 CEST 2017

Jonathan Kew wrote:

> No, I'm quite confident this is a deliberate joke. After all, it's 
> telling us it's broken.

Actually, the message is stating the simple fact that a person with the ability to fix the "can fix can fix" error message by deleting the second "can fix" is likely also the right person to fix the confusion being reported somewhere up the call chain.  Currently, the class of such persons is of size one.  If the second "can fix" were in quotes, though, it wouldn't be a deliberately amusing, self-referential error message.

The beauty of there being no bugs in the code up the call chain, of course, is that this confusion error can never be issued, which raises some interesting ontological issues I suppose.

The tragedy is that such beauty is not provable.  Allegedly, anyway.

Doug McKenna

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