[NTG-pdftex] \pdfprimitive

Taco Hoekwater taco at elvenkind.com
Sat Apr 7 14:29:43 CEST 2007

Martin Schröder wrote:
> 2007/4/6, Philip & Le Khanh <Philip-and-LeKhanh at royal-tunbridge-wells.org>:
>> rather than just PDF primitives ...  If
>> this is the case, is there any chance of
>> a better choice of name in a future release ?
> Would you prefer a pdfTeX version that suddenly has a primitive \foo
> thus potentially breaking all documents already providing \foo ? :-)

(We've been over this, I am just reiterating my viewpoint here)

Having \foo does not prevent \def\foo{} at all.

It prevents \newcommand\foo, but \pdffoo prevents \newcommand\pdffoo,
and depending on the purpose of a macro package, that can be just as
bad. The LaTeX macro was written on the assumption that the engine
would never, ever change.

That assumption is faulty today and has been for quite a few years
now, so I don't buy that we should cater for it in the executable.
In LuaTeX I will follow the eTeX paradigm, and this particular
command will be called \primitive. Only PDF-related commands will
have a \pdf prefix.

In any case, people that don't like new features can always stick
to an old(er) version of (pdf)TeX, without developments taking place.

Best wishes,

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