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 From: Ralf Hemmecke Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] hyperlinked algebra Date: Fri, 16 Dec 2005 01:53:36 +0100 User-agent: Thunderbird 1.4 (X11/20050908)

Bill Page wrote:

On December 15, 2005 10:35 AM Tim Daly (root) wrote:

in tex if you want a 2 character command (say \n) but no space you write:

foo\n{}bar ==> foo\nbar

the {} tells tex that \n has ended


Right.


and has no argument.



I tend to say that is wrong. The definition of \n says whether \n takes an argument at all. {} is just an empty group which could have some influence though on the hyphenation algorithm, IIRC.


I believe that

foo\n bar  <==>  foo\n{}bar

are identical. No?



They don't look identical, but they do the same thing as long as you haven't redefined the meaning of { and } and the meaning of the space character. They would not be identical, if there where the following definition around.

As a proof of concept look at what the following code gives.
Note especially how the space in "backslash n" gets typeset in the .dvi.

Happy TeXing... ;-)
Ralf

\documentclass{article}
\expandafter\def\csname n bar\endcsname{BAR}
\catcode\ =11%consider space as belonging to the category "letter"
\def\n{(backslash n)}
\begin{document}
\fbox{foo\n bar}
\fbox{foo\n{}bar}
\end{document}

`