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Readability of troff documents (Was: [Groff] Bug in gxditview)

From: Giorgos Magos
Subject: Readability of troff documents (Was: [Groff] Bug in gxditview)
Date: Fri, 23 May 2003 08:41:56 +0300

Robert D. Goulding said on 22 May 2003:
>   Though I don't know whether anyone even *uses* it
>   anymore...  Anyway, I noticed that the position of the
>   line gets changed after any em-dash.  Regarding the \(em
>   and \(en dashes:

Is there a way (other than preprocessing through some sed
filter) of inserting these the way they're inserted in
LaTeX? Ie:

em dash is ---
en dash is --

I find that \(em and \(en (and other similar codes)
seriously reduce the readability of the _source_ document,
as well as increase the knowledge level required to create
documents in troff. It shouldn't be hard to explain to a
non-computer person that a dash meant as punctuation should
be entered as ---, but trying to explain \(em?

Ideally the only troff codes I'd like to see in a document are
those needed for logical formatting, ie the macros (.PP, .H1, etc).

Any thoughts on this?

Giorgos Magos

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