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Re: <OK> Re: [Groff] changing .em behaviour?

From: Mike Bianchi
Subject: Re: <OK> Re: [Groff] changing .em behaviour?
Date: Wed, 22 Apr 2009 15:43:06 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.17+20080114 (2008-01-14)

Denis makes a good point, but I wish to offer a counter argument.

If the model of groff was "compatibility over all" I would agree with him.
But, in my opinion, groff is not aiming for compatibility as the first
requirement.  The very fact that the line


        warning: `sp1' not defined (probable missing space after `sp')

(unless the  -C  option is invoked) illustrates that groff has moved beyond
historical troff.

To me that implies that the unexpected behavior of  .em  should not be

The fact the  .em  will act differently in compatible mode, and that fact
will be documented, is good enough for me.

                                                Mike Bianchi

On Wed, Apr 22, 2009 at 07:48:50PM +0100, Denis M. Wilson wrote:
> I think we have to be cautious about changing the behaviour
> of requests. We do not know whether someone out there has not
> made use of a particular feature of a request, documented or
> not. I know this from personal experience. I've carried out a
> large number of experiments to find what requests actually do,
> the old troff docs being *very* terse.
> I therefore support only the *new* .em1 request, and then
> only if there is a genuine need (I'm against feature bloat).
> Denis

 Mike Bianchi
 Foveal Systems

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