[Dev-luatex] REQ: Please tell comp.text.tex why LuaTeX chose embed rather than extend.

Jonathan Fine jfine at pytex.org
Mon May 25 13:27:21 CEST 2009

Khaled Hosny wrote:

>> I'm sorry, but I don't know what you mean here.
> I meant the wrong question is being asked here, they didn't have to
> choose between embed and extend, simply because only embed is the viable
> choice according to project's goal. IMHO, the question would be if
> LuaTeX is interested in making the engine available as shared library
> (or Lua extension) in the future or not, as this is a completely
> different goal than what they are trying to do right now.

Thank you, Khaled, for this clarification.  My understanding of the 
situation is a little different.

First some background.  If one wants to provide a service (to Lua 
scripts) then one has to write an extension (to Lua).  If one want to 
write an application, one can go either way (either embed or extend).

According to http://www.luatex.org, the "main objective is to provide an 
open and configurable variant of TeX while at the same time offering 
downward compatibility."  I don't see anything here that leads them to 
prefer embed over extend.

On the page http://www.luatex.org/roadmap/ I see
     "allow Lua callbacks for file searching"
     "Allow Lua scripts to control [...] font loading etc."
and so forth.  These might be situations where embed would be preferred 
to extend, but I'm not sure either way.


>> I think it would also be great to have a 'instant preview' front end to TeX.
> I'm too looking forward for some thing like that, I even have some idea
> that would be best implemented if we had such feature, and I know there
> are many potentials for such extension.

Thank you for your encouragement and interest.  I really think this sort 
of thing is a vital part of our future (along with something better than 
the TeX macro language).


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