[Dev-luatex] Modifying the LuaTeX Engine - OT: Don Knuth

Hans Hagen pragma at wxs.nl
Tue Dec 30 09:28:38 CET 2008


Jonathan Fine wrote:

>> actually i've heard Don say (at an ntg QA session long ago) that he 
>> was surprised that there were no more fundamental extensions like 
>> pdftex (at that time upcoming); also, there is a difference between 
>> (say) 2^4 fundamental different tex variants and 2^32 confusingly 
>> slightly unsimilar ones
> 
> Hans:  I'm looking at the transcripts (in Digital Typography) and I 
> think you're referring to the CS TUG session (pages 617-8) and not the 
> NTG session.

Huh? I was at that ntg session in Amsterdam which is an 10 hour drive 
from Czech. Ok, I might be making things up and creating my own truth 
but somehow my I stored that remark in my memory (as usual at such a QA 
session someone asks "what do you think of developments like etex, 
omega, next generation tex etc" and i think it was related to such a 
question. But anyhow, I don't want to put answers in someone's mouth so 
if you're so sure that I'm wrong, forget about it.

> Hans:  Your comment has two parts, separated by an 'also'.  Just to 
> clarify, the first part is your paraphrase of Don Knuth and the second 
> part (so far as I can tell) comes just from you, and not at all from Don 
> Knuth.

Sure, I could have used a . instead of a. I was refering to your quote 
of "pseudo-TeX systems to proliferate" and I get the feeling that etex, 
omega, pdftex, luatex don't fall into this category ... all have been 
presented at meetings, discussed, even with Don being present and never 
have I heard him say/write 'please quit the development of your pseudo 
tex' or 'hey, you may not use tex as part of its name'.

And this is what David meant (I think): let Don talk for himself and 
don't start a religion (by interpreting and putting things in someones 
mouth, like: we should use dvi because that is what Don wants (who 
says?) or stick to tex (because Don wrote it and sticks to it for clear 
reasons that everyone understands), while actually Don is way more open 
minded than some of his followers can grasp).

> No need for anyone to reply to this (except David K, off-list if he 
> wishes).

Well, no need for *you* to reply for this (after all you're now 
continuing a discussion that you yourself quit), but david might have 
another go at it -)

Hans

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