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An XEmacs mode - here goes...

From: Gordon Deane
Subject: An XEmacs mode - here goes...
Date: Thu, 06 Nov 1997 00:14:42 +1100

Dear fellow Louters,

Lots of people seem to post here asking for an Emacs mode.  I've done a lot of 
lout recently and really missed it, so I've written one.  I'm releasing it in 
a buggy, unfinished state because exams are hitting me *really* soon and I 
shouldn't be playing with it :-)

Background:  One of the best things about LaTeX (in my opinion) is the AUCTeX 
mode (maintained by Per Abrahamsen) which is far and away the best markup 
writing system I've seen and makes writing TeX vastly less painful.

It's under the GPL (Gnu Public License) just like Lout.  Isn't free software 
wonderful?  So, I've taken a chainsaw to AUCTeX and produced a lout mode.  I 
also gained a new appreciation of how much simpler Lout is that TeX (!)

It now has the following good and bad points:

 ++ Quite sophisticated font-lock (@B word and @B {two words} are correctly 
highlighted in bold, for example).  Equations are coloured green so you can 
see when your brackets match.
 - Only really works in XEmacs and especially in the X Window System.
 - There's still more to do, and the fonts need some tweaking
 - @Title needs to be on the same line as @[[Sub]Sub]Section to be in the 
right font (I think I know how to fix this)

 ++ Comprehensive syntax table, so XEmacs can correctly handle
 "\"#" #comment

 ++ Electric quotes (from AUCTeX) - hard to describe. ("->``, ""->")
 ++ Electric $ (original work) - Type a few and see.

 + Some keyboard shortcuts; more are easily added

 - No documentation yet
 - Needs some Emacs knowledge to install and run at the moment

 * The next stage is to add the ability to run lout and jump to the error 
 * AUCTeX does \command completion.  It should be easy to convert to complete 
lout @Commands (I created a file of all such for the lout/include dir in five 
minutes with 'sed')
 ** Long term, it would be nice to get AUCTeX's master/subfile commands all 
working so you can press a few keys to just compile the region with the right 
headers etc.
 ** Special code for style sheets and reference databases would be nice

Version 0.1 is about 100 kilobytes (there's still lots of deadweight lisp) so 
I won't post it here and I don't have any public ftp space.  If anyone wants 
me to post it to them directly or can offer ftp space I'll do so.

I probably can't work on this further until after Christmas.  If anybody wants 
to work on it feel free.

Thanks everybody.



   Gordon Deane    | Logic is what you apply before you understand the
Engineering/Science| problem.  Engineering is about how to panic constructively
Australian National| when you do.  But a BE degree only qualifies you for the
    University     | third stage.  [your turn to bring the beer]

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