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## Re: babel latex headers and image generation commands

 From: Matt Huszagh Subject: Re: babel latex headers and image generation commands Date: Sat, 29 Aug 2020 00:02:51 -0700

Bastien <bzg@gnu.org> writes:

> If you find the time to share your change as a _patch_ (not the whole
> updated Elisp function), that will allow more readers on this list to
> quickly understand what is at stake.

Ok, I've finally gotten around to taking a crack at this. The patch is
attached. Basically, it allows a lot more control when converting a
latex source block into an svg image file.

Specifically, this new method does not place any restrictions on the
latex contents (the old svg generation required the use of
\documentclass[preview]{standalone}), or on the specific generation
commands (it does require first compiling to pdf then to svg, though I
guess this could be generalized if necessary). Additionally, it allows
you to use a setup independent of the setup used for inline latex
snippets. I think this is important because snippets and latex source
blocks have different use cases. For instance, I use snippets for simple
inline math (e.g. $$x=6$$) and source blocks for complicated full-blown
latex pictures and sets of equations, etc. that are not supported by
latex fragments.

I'll present my use case as an example (see the patch to understand the
customizations).

;; this is particular to my use case, see latex-preamble-by-backend'
(defun by-backend (blist)
(let ((ret nil))
(if org-export-current-backend
(let* ((backend-name org-export-current-backend)
(elem (assoc backend-name blist)))
(if elem
(setq ret (cdr elem))))
(let ((elem (assoc t blist)))
(setq ret (cdr elem))))
(eval ret)))

;; custom function for preamble generation
(defun latex-preamble-by-backend (params)
(concat "\\documentclass{"
(cdr (assoc :class params))
"}"
"\\definecolor{fg}{rgb}{"
(by-backend '((html . "0,0,0")
(t . (org-latex-color :foreground))))
"}\n"
"\\definecolor{bg}{rgb}{"
(by-backend '((html . "1,1,1")
(t . (org-latex-color :background))))
"}\n"
"\\def\\pc{"
(by-backend '((html . "100")
(t . "20")))
"}\n"))

;; actual set customization
(setq org-babel-latex-preamble
(lambda (params)
(latex-preamble-by-backend params)))

Now if I define a source block:

#+begin_src latex :hidden
{\color{fg}
\begin{equation*}
|z| = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}
\end{equation*}
}
#+end_src

Using my customization above, this will turn into the following latex

\documentclass{math}\definecolor{fg}{rgb}{0.819608,0.721569,0.592157}
\definecolor{bg}{rgb}{0.0235294,0.137255,0.160784}
\def\pc{20}
\begin{document}{\color{fg}
\begin{equation*}
|z| = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}
\end{equation*}
}\end{document}

which is then turned into an svg with inkscape, though this could be
dvisvgm, or whatever you want.

Math is a custom document class I've defined. But my function also
allows the setting of other classes (which is useful because some
classes work better for tikz-like images and others work better for
math). In fact, since the preamble generation function can use any of
the source block parameters, I could make it do a bunch of other
conditional stuff. I've also configured it to set my color scheme in a
backend-dependent way. This allows me to get color schemes that match my
emacs theme when generating images for viewing within emacs and another
color scheme (in my case black foreground, white background) when
exporting to html. Note that none of this is enforced on other
people. My patch simply allows you to achieve this sort of flexibility.

I think this patch needs some discussing. I had some trouble deciding on
the best way to implement this functionality because its hard to get
anything to be thematically consistent with the current latex execute
command, which feels like a collection of loosely-related functionality
(for instance, the htlatex backend generates a completely different
latex source than the imagemagick backend, even though the outputs could
be quite similar -- svg and png). I think there's a lot of room for
improvement in the latex execute function that could make it more
general and flexible, but it's hard to do this in a way that doesn't
break existing workflows. My patch tries to be minimally invasive to
these workflows, though it will break workflows in an easily recoverable
way for anyone using htlatex for svg output.

Anyway, I'd be curious to hear thoughts and I'd be interested to discuss
options for further refactoring the latex execute function.

Matt

On Fri, Aug 28, 2020 at 11:10 PM Matt Huszagh <huszaghmatt@gmail.com> wrote:
Bastien <bzg@gnu.org> writes:

> If you find the time to share your change as a _patch_ (not the whole
> updated Elisp function), that will allow more readers on this list to
> quickly understand what is at stake.

Ok, I've finally gotten around to taking a crack at this. The patch is
attached. Basically, it allows a lot more control when converting a
latex source block into an svg image file.

Specifically, this new method does not place any restrictions on the
latex contents (the old svg generation required the use of
\documentclass[preview]{standalone}), or on the specific generation
commands (it does require first compiling to pdf then to svg, though I
guess this could be generalized if necessary). Additionally, it allows
you to use a setup independent of the setup used for inline latex
snippets. I think this is important because snippets and latex source
blocks have different use cases. For instance, I use snippets for simple
inline math (e.g. $$x=6$$) and source blocks for complicated full-blown
latex pictures and sets of equations, etc. that are not supported by
latex fragments.

I'll present my use case as an example (see the patch to understand the
customizations).

;; this is particular to my use case, see latex-preamble-by-backend'
(defun by-backend (blist)
(let ((ret nil))
(if org-export-current-backend
(let* ((backend-name org-export-current-backend)
(elem (assoc backend-name blist)))
(if elem
(setq ret (cdr elem))))
(let ((elem (assoc t blist)))
(setq ret (cdr elem))))
(eval ret)))

;; custom function for preamble generation
(defun latex-preamble-by-backend (params)
(concat "\\documentclass{"
(cdr (assoc :class params))
"}"
"\\definecolor{fg}{rgb}{"
(by-backend '((html . "0,0,0")
(t . (org-latex-color :foreground))))
"}\n"
"\\definecolor{bg}{rgb}{"
(by-backend '((html . "1,1,1")
(t . (org-latex-color :background))))
"}\n"
"\\def\\pc{"
(by-backend '((html . "100")
(t . "20")))
"}\n"))

;; actual set customization
(setq org-babel-latex-preamble
(lambda (params)
(latex-preamble-by-backend params)))

Now if I define a source block:

#+begin_src latex :hidden
{\color{fg}
\begin{equation*}
|z| = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}
\end{equation*}
}
#+end_src

Using my customization above, this will turn into the following latex

\documentclass{math}\definecolor{fg}{rgb}{0.819608,0.721569,0.592157}
\definecolor{bg}{rgb}{0.0235294,0.137255,0.160784}
\def\pc{20}
\begin{document}{\color{fg}
\begin{equation*}
|z| = \sqrt{x^2 + y^2}
\end{equation*}
}\end{document}

which is then turned into an svg with inkscape, though this could be
dvisvgm, or whatever you want.

Math is a custom document class I've defined. But my function also
allows the setting of other classes (which is useful because some
classes work better for tikz-like images and others work better for
math). In fact, since the preamble generation function can use any of
the source block parameters, I could make it do a bunch of other
conditional stuff. I've also configured it to set my color scheme in a
backend-dependent way. This allows me to get color schemes that match my
emacs theme when generating images for viewing within emacs and another
color scheme (in my case black foreground, white background) when
exporting to html. Note that none of this is enforced on other
people. My patch simply allows you to achieve this sort of flexibility.

I think this patch needs some discussing. I had some trouble deciding on
the best way to implement this functionality because its hard to get
anything to be thematically consistent with the current latex execute
command, which feels like a collection of loosely-related functionality
(for instance, the htlatex backend generates a completely different
latex source than the imagemagick backend, even though the outputs could
be quite similar -- svg and png). I think there's a lot of room for
improvement in the latex execute function that could make it more
general and flexible, but it's hard to do this in a way that doesn't
break existing workflows. My patch tries to be minimally invasive to
these workflows, though it will break workflows in an easily recoverable
way for anyone using htlatex for svg output.

Anyway, I'd be curious to hear thoughts and I'd be interested to discuss
options for further refactoring the latex execute function.

Matt

0001-ob-latex.el-Make-latex-to-svg-compilation-very-custo.patch
Description: Binary data