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Re: [Axiom-developer] build-improvements and latex

From: Ralf Hemmecke
Subject: Re: [Axiom-developer] build-improvements and latex
Date: Wed, 08 Nov 2006 12:29:29 +0100
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060909)

1) All other programs that I can think of that process an
   input file with a given extension, generate output files
   by replacing the extension with one appropriate to the
   output. E.g.

     latex name.tex --> name.dvi
     dvipdfm name.dvi --> name.pdf

   In latex this happens even if the extension is not .tex

     latex name.pamphlet --> name.dvi

OK, that is the common state.

   It would be very strange to see

     latex name.tex --> name.tex.dvi
     dvipdfm name.tex.dvi --> name.tex.dvi.pdf

   wouldn't it?

Of course.

2) File names with more than one . are may not be portable to
   non-linux file systems - although the only ones I can think of
   are old and unlikely candidates for Axiom.

That is an argument. But perhaps for all those of us who are not so familiar with non-Linux, it would be more helpful to say which systems these are. The only system I know would be DOS. But then forget about the .pamphlet extension. You only have 3 characters. ;-)

Anything else that cannot handle 2 dots or long filenames?

3) Files with unnecessarily long names are more awkward to use.

Ok I admit that reasons 2) and 3) are not very strong reasons...

Not even 1) is a reason. Why do you believe one can say

make dvi

in ALLPROSE and then say

xdvi myalps.dvi

to get the whole documentation although I have the convention
notangle removes .nw
noweave adds .tex  (result is .nw.tex)

There will never be generated anything else than one dvi file. And I don't understand, why people care so much about the names of intermediate files. You can remove .nw.tex files and no harm is done. If make would already remove them, one would not even see what strange things are done under the hat. But that naming scheme simplifies the understanding of the system (only in my opinion, of course). One doesn't have to rename axiom.sty.pamphlet to axiom-sty.pamphlet.

So the only reason I see not to just add ".tex" would be portability. But which are systems we want to build Axiom on that cannot handle two dots?


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