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Section numbers, Emacs, Ghostscript & PlainText

From: Marnix Klooster
Subject: Section numbers, Emacs, Ghostscript & PlainText
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 96 16:37:08 -0000 (met)

Hello all,

I recently began to try Lout, and, being new to this list, I have a 
couple of questions.  First off, is there some kind of FAQ around?

Is it possible to get unnumbered (sub)sections, a la LaTeX's \section*? 
Or to start numbering (sub)sections from zero?

Is there an (x)emacs mode for Lout?

I tried to recreate the PostScript version of the user manual 
lout.3.08.user.ps from the Lout sources provided.  The resulting file 
is almost identical, except for a lot of numbers which I assume are 
coordinates.  Where does this difference come from?  Maybe there are 
small differences in floating point computations?

Not really a Lout question: I run Lout 3.08 under Linux 1.2.13 (with 
gcc 2.6.3), and I use ghostscript 2.6.2 to view and print the 
PostScript output.  When viewing the output of Lout on the screen, it 
often doesn't look too good.  (This holds for the PS version of the 
user manual, as well as for output I produced myself.) Often characters 
appear too close or through each other, the baselines of different 
fonts are not lined up, and some lines cross the right hand margin 
slightly.  Curiously, most of this does not happen under large 
magnifications.  On paper the Lout output looks OK.  Is this a bug in 
ghostscript?  (These problems don't occur using LaTeX and dvips.)

Finally, here are some hints for people who -- just like me -- try to 
create a document in both PostScript and plain text versions.  This is 
not too difficult to do using @BackEnd, using the following definition:

  def @BE  # short for BackEnd
      named Text { }
      named PS   { }
  { @BackEnd @Case {
        PlainText  @Yield { Text }
        PostScript @Yield { PS }

(This shorthand is really useful.  Could it be added to some system 
file for general use?)  If you want some text to stand out in both text 
and PS, use something like this:

  def @Em  # short for emphasis
      right x
  { @BE Text { @S x } PS { @I x }

This works because @S converts its argument to capitals for the 
PlainText backend.

By the way, would it be possible to merge the "doc" and "pdoc" system 
include files into one file that uses @BackEnd to separate between the 
two? This makes it much easier to maintain, at least in my case where I 
use both files to produce PS and text versions of the same document.

Oh yes, why is the default vmargin of @Tab 0.5v for plain text?  
Shouldn't this be 1v, or perhaps 0v?

Thanks in advance,


Marnix Klooster
address@hidden   //   address@hidden

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