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LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
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More options May 1 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy)
Date: 1995/05/01
Subject: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
What comes next in this sequence:

2.09, 2.09, 2.09, 2.09, 2e ?

OK, you got it right: 2e .

This is the crazy numbering scheme They thought up.
The next version after LaTeX2e is ... LaTeX2e.
And the version before LaTeX2.09 was ... LaTeX2.09.

Why don't They just call it LaTeX3.0 ?
Then the next version could be -- this may be difficult for Them --
LaTeX3.1 .
And the one after that ... is left as an exercise to the reader.

Sometimes one wonders if They are really aliens.

--
Timothy Murphy
e-mail: t...@maths.tcd.ie
tel: +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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More options May 1 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: c...@moor-160.dorms.tamu.edu (Christopher Cherry)
Date: 1995/05/01
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
Timothy Murphy (t...@maths.tcd.ie) wrote:

: This is the crazy numbering scheme They thought up.
: The next version after LaTeX2e is ... LaTeX2e.
: And the version before LaTeX2.09 was ... LaTeX2.09.

The version LaTeX2e (afaik) is not a "new" version of
LaTeX2.09, it just standardizes and unifies the extensions and
dialects which had become quite incompatible.  So, you
could say the 'e' stands for "extended" or "enhanced" or
something.

The team working on LaTeX3 is rewriting LaTeX, which will
include extensions as part of the kernel or part of
some more extension packages.

(This info. from The LaTeX Companion -- Preface)

: Why don't They just call it LaTeX3.0 ?
: Then the next version could be -- this may be difficult for Them --
: LaTeX3.1 .

: Sometimes one wonders if They are really aliens.

I don't know.  All I know is that it's free, easy to use, and
looks great.  Let them be aliens!  :-)

-chris c.

--
c-che...@tamu.edu         |Death cannot stop True Love.
Linux: It's not just for |All it can do is delay it for a while.
breakfast anymore. |                   -The Princess Bride

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More options May 1 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy)
Date: 1995/05/01
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

c...@moor-160.dorms.tamu.edu (Christopher Cherry) writes:
>: Why don't They just call it LaTeX3.0 ?
>: Then the next version could be -- this may be difficult for Them --
>: LaTeX3.1 .
>: Sometimes one wonders if They are really aliens.
>I don't know.  All I know is that it's free, easy to use, and
>looks great.  Let them be aliens!  :-)

I agree that LaTeX2e is good.
But the "numbering scheme" -- if you can call it that --
causes considerable confusion to those coming to LaTeX
for the first time.
[And these are the people we should be aiming at.]
If you don't believe me, try to explain the numbering scheme to yourself.

LaTeX3 is just vapourware.
It would be much better if we just forgot about it.
If some day this "team" produces a new version
which everyone agrees to adopt as the new LaTeX,
just give it the next number to whatever number has been reached.

Generally, it would be much better if the TeX community
just followed normal practice.
Karl Berry's unixTeX is a good model to follow.

--
Timothy Murphy
e-mail: t...@maths.tcd.ie
tel: +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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More options May 1 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: p...@comlab.ox.ac.uk (Damian Cugley)
Date: 1995/05/01
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
In article <3o1a0t$...@bell.maths.tcd.ie> t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy) writes: > Why don't They just call it LaTeX3.0 ? They'd already allocated "3" as the version identifier for a total rewrite of LaTeX planned for the distant future. It isn't called LaTeX 2.10, (followed by 2.11, 2.12, ..., and patches indicated as 2.10.1, 2.10.2, ...), which is what I would have suggested if anyone had asked, because the marketing people want to make a clear distinction between the moribund LaTeX 2.09 and the new, dynamic, exciting, supported LaTeX 2e. We are supposed to think of the "twee" as part of the name, not part of the version identification, apparantly. Not that the documentation is ever consistent on this point. There is a new foolish assertion that the "e" really is supposed to be an epsilon, standing for "a small change", which is ironic given how much work has gone into LaTeX 2e. Of course, none of this is derrived from the Apple IIe and Macintosh IIe series, oh dear me no. People want to put too much cuteness into version ideintifiers. What we really want to know is the anwer to questions like Is my copy the latest one? Is it backward-compatible with the previous release? With LaTeX this you have to write some mess like "2e.1995-06-01.4", which is 16 characters, rather than "2.15.4", which is six. -- Damian You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 1 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: a...@reg.triumf.ca (Donald Arseneau) Date: 1995/05/01 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <3o1g5i$...@news.tamu.edu>, c...@moor-160.dorms.tamu.edu (Christopher Cherry) writes...

% Timothy Murphy (t...@maths.tcd.ie) wrote:
% : This is the crazy numbering scheme They thought up.
% : The next version after LaTeX2e is ... LaTeX2e.
% : And the version before LaTeX2.09 was ... LaTeX2.09.
%
% The version LaTeX2e (afaik) is not a "new" version of
% LaTeX2.09, it just standardizes and unifies the extensions and
% dialects which had become quite incompatible.

Maybe They said so at some point, but it is nonsense.  If They did
say so, maybe They dropped the claim after LL wanted new commands.
In any case, usrguide.tex does not claim that LaTeX2e is not a "new"
version....

Welcome to \LaTeXe, the new standard version of the \LaTeX{} Document
Preparation System.
[...]
The previous version of \LaTeX{} was known as \LaTeX~2.09.

I also feel compelled to stir up some mud about how the guide continues...

...unfortunate result: incompatible \LaTeX{} formats came into use at
different sites.  This included standard \LaTeX~2.09', \LaTeX{} built
with the \emph{New Font Selection Scheme}~(\NFSS), \SLiTeX, \AmSLaTeX,

It was They who made NFSS and distributed modified LaTeX, claiming it
was still just LaTex2.09.  This caused the crisis that necessitated
LaTeX2e.

Donald Arseneau                         a...@reg.triumf.ca

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More options May 2 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: M.P...@shef.ac.uk (Mike Piff)
Date: 1995/05/02
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
In article <3o1a0t$...@bell.maths.tcd.ie>, t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy) says: >What comes next in this sequence: >2.09, 2.09, 2.09, 2.09, 2e ? >OK, you got it right: 2e . Even worse, for a year$2+\epsilon$was *less* than 2.09!! %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % %% Dr M J Piff, School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of %% %% Sheffield, UK. +44 114 282 4431 e-mail: M.P...@sheffield.ac.uk %% %% <a href="http://www.shef.ac.uk/uni/academic/I-M/ms/index.html">SoMaS</A>%% %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 3 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: m...@beatles.cselt.stet.it (Maurizio Codogno) Date: 1995/05/03 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <1995May1.193531.13...@msc13.comlab.ox.ac.uk>, Damian Cugley <p...@comlab.ox.ac.uk> wrote: >There is a new foolish assertion that the "e" really is supposed to be >an epsilon, standing for "a small change", which is ironic given how >much work has gone into LaTeX 2e. *new*? It's 2 years that the last e is an epsilon (a \varepsilon to be picky, but I have always used that symbol for a small quantity). I would be for latex2.1e, latex2.2e, latex2.99999999e ... ciao, .mau. You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 3 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk (Grendelsbane Geatwealda) Date: 1995/05/03 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? Oh lordy! So LaTeX2e is a silly name, but so is LaTeX 2.09. But let's get a few things right... no such animal as the Macintosh IIe... Apple IIe was surely just a model, not a series... and doesn't delta normally stand for a small change? and isn't LaTeX2e free software, so what's all this about marketing? Now then, using a date is a sensible way of handling version identifiers: 1) It's easy to get some idea of whether you have a recent version 2) LaTeX2e can check the date of packages/classes/etc. to make sure you are using a suitable version 3) They're easier to remember than arbitrary numbers 4) LaTeX2e 1995-01-21 is much less messy than LaTeX2e 2.15.4 (what do all those numbers mean? You can't tell unless you're one of THEM...) I reckon the best thing to do is stop whinging about a silly name - the important thing is what can it do and what's it compatible with', which you've got to read the documentation for. Flame of me own: fer gawd's sake, you're getting enormous amount of work done for you for nothing, it works better than the old version, so stop whining and upgrade or not! "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet" Have fun, Rowland. Ah! Here be dragons lurking in the rains and mists! Here, in the land that time forgot, where the email servers stalk the earth: wild and untamed. Some call it Lancashire. Rowland the all-round good egg might be found at: | Why bother? rjm1...@kirk.acs.bolton.ac.uk or | rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk or even | Because it feels good, mbhz...@afs.mcc.ac.uk | that's why. ----====:::: Disclaimers? We don' need no stinkin' disclaimers. ::::====---- You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 3 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) Date: 1995/05/03 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <3o8e1r$...@yama.mcc.ac.uk>,

Grendelsbane Geatwealda <rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk> wrote:
>Oh lordy!  So LaTeX2e is a silly name, but so is LaTeX 2.09.  But let's get
>a few things right...  no such animal as the Macintosh IIe...  Apple IIe was
>surely just a model, not a series...  and doesn't delta normally stand for a
>small change?  and isn't LaTeX2e free software, so what's all this about
>marketing?

I have it on good authority that the $2_\varepsilon$ was dreamt up by
Addison-Wesley marketing loonies.  Mike Piff banged on for a while in
the early days of 2e saying that "it had no mathematical meaning", so
you're not the first there, either.

As Rowland Geatwealda so rightly says, though, "it's free software and
it works, so what's the beef?".
--
Robin (Campaign for Real Radio 3) Fairbairns     r...@cl.cam.ac.uk
U of Cambridge Computer Lab, Pembroke St, Cambridge  CB2 3QG, UK
Private page: http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/users/rf/robin.html

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More options May 3 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: p...@io.org (Patrick TJ McPhee)
Date: 1995/05/03
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
In article <3o1g5i$...@news.tamu.edu>, Christopher Cherry <c...@moor-160.dorms.tamu.edu> wrote: % Timothy Murphy (t...@maths.tcd.ie) wrote: % : This is the crazy numbering scheme They thought up. % : The next version after LaTeX2e is ... LaTeX2e. % : And the version before LaTeX2.09 was ... LaTeX2.09. % % The version LaTeX2e (afaik) is not a "new" version of % LaTeX2.09, it just standardizes and unifies the extensions and % dialects which had become quite incompatible. I will defend the LaTeX team against most charges. They work hard for no pay, and continually improve and extend the program. They are not millionaires, and they are not part of a world-wide conspiracy to subjugate humanity. They do not have the slightest clue what version numbers are for. Between 1986 and 1994 there were several releases of LaTeX. For the most part, identically-named files cannot be shared between versions of these releases, so it's important to be able to differentiate between them. All of the releases were given number 2.09. It used to be quite common for probles posted to this space to be answered with your LaTeX is out of date. You have version 2.09 dated <x>, and the current version is 2.09 dated <y>'. It would have been less confusing if there had been no version number, and the release date had been the sole method of differentiating between versions. With the new release of LaTeX, the version number was finally changed, but the way in which it was changed caused an almost unbelievable amount of confusion. Christopher's comment above is indicative of this. LaTeX2e is indeed the replacement for LaTeX 2.09. Why, you might ask, was it not called LaTeX 2.1, if this is truly the case. Because the LaTeX team, although hard workers with the best interests of the community at heart, does not have the slightest clue what version numbers are for. At least now there are patch levels. % So, you % could say the 'e' stands for "extended" or "enhanced" or % something. When, in fact, it stands for epsilon'. I think this gives a good handle on how the team, or the part of it involved in coming up with new version numbers, thinks. I imagine there was a conversation something like this: This doesn't seem too different from what we had before -- I don't see any reason to change the version number.' It's been eight years\dots' Yeah, but we don't want to confuse the users with a new number.' There's the \verb"\documentclass"/\verb"\documentstyle" switch -- you can't run anything created for <2 June 1994> through <25 January 1992>.' You're right, but we need to have a version number that shows nothing's changed very much -- maybe version$2.09+\epsilon$.' Agreed.' They were already talking in t1 encoding so the angle brackets would show up correctly. There was a lot of confusion about the relationship between version 2.09 and version 2e, which would have been almost unimaginable if the version number had been changed to, say, 2.10. Think about it This may seem like a dumb question, but what's the relationship between LaTeX 2.09 and LaTeX 2.10? Is 2.10 the next version, or is it a completely different software system?' With LaTeX 3, I hope a more sensible version numbering scheme is adopted. I suggest version.release.modification.file'. The principle is that every time you make an earth-shattering change, you increase the version number, every time you make an incompatible change, you increase the release number, every time you refresh all the files in the system, you increase the modification number, and every time you release a new version of one file, you increase its file number. It's not rocket science, but it would help people keep their systems up-to-date by making it easy to know how far out of date they already are. -- Patrick TJ McPhee Toronto Canada p...@io.org You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 4 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy) Date: 1995/05/04 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk (Grendelsbane Geatwealda) writes: >Flame of me own: fer gawd's sake, you're getting enormous amount of work >done for you for nothing, it works better than the old version, so stop >whining and upgrade or not! In fact I think LaTeX2e is very good. I'd like to see LaTeX used much more widely. One reason why it is not, in my opinion, is that there are a number of small but niggling problems which put off non-TeX users. The numbering system is one of them. Perhaps dating programs rather than numbering them is a good idea -- but it isn't what is normally done, so it presents a small obstacle to the newcomer. -- Timothy Murphy e-mail: t...@maths.tcd.ie tel: +353-1-2842366 s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 5 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: M.P...@shef.ac.uk (Mike Piff) Date: 1995/05/05 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <3o90d1...@lyra.csx.cam.ac.uk>, r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) says: > Mike Piff banged on for a while in >the early days of 2e saying that "it had no mathematical meaning", so >you're not the first there, either. Mike Piff merely pointed out when one of Them said The e is supposed to be a subscripted epsilon. Mathematicians will see the significance of that! that there *was* no significance to that! One e-mail, as I recall! Mike Piff *did* bang on about other deficiencies in 2e in the early days, and still bangs on about whether they meant$2+\epsilon$or$2.09+\epsilon$, but can see that calling it \LaTeX2.09${+}\epsilon$would be a marketing disaster. >As Rowland Geatwealda so rightly says, though, "it's free software and >it works, so what's the beef?". >-- Don't bring beef into this discussion! There's nothing wrong with our BEEF, is there lads? Honest! Just our carrots are poisonous... Mike Piff %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % %% Dr M J Piff, School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of %% %% Sheffield, UK. +44 114 282 4431 e-mail: M.P...@sheffield.ac.uk %% %% <a href="http://www.shef.ac.uk/uni/academic/I-M/ms/index.html">SoMaS</A>%% %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% % You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 5 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: d...@usna.navy.mil (PROF D. Rogers {EAS FAC}) Date: 1995/05/05 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <1MAY199520372...@reg.triumf.ca> a...@reg.triumf.ca (Donald Arseneau) writes: !In article <3o1g5i$...@news.tamu.edu!, c...@moor-160.dorms.tamu.edu (Christopher Cherry) writes...
!% Timothy Murphy (t...@maths.tcd.ie) wrote:
!% : This is the crazy numbering scheme They thought up.
!% : The next version after LaTeX2e is ... LaTeX2e.
!% : And the version before LaTeX2.09 was ... LaTeX2.09.
!%
!% The version LaTeX2e (afaik) is not a "new" version of
!% LaTeX2.09, it just standardizes and unifies the extensions and
!% dialects which had become quite incompatible.
!
!Maybe They said so at some point, but it is nonsense.  If They did
!say so, maybe They dropped the claim after LL wanted new commands.
!In any case, usrguide.tex does not claim that LaTeX2e is not a "new"
!version....
!
!   Welcome to \LaTeXe, the new standard version of the \LaTeX{} Document
!   Preparation System.
!   [...]
!   The previous version of \LaTeX{} was known as \LaTeX~2.09.
!
!I also feel compelled to stir up some mud about how the guide continues...
!
!  ...unfortunate result: incompatible \LaTeX{} formats came into use at
!  different sites.  This included standard \LaTeX~2.09', \LaTeX{} built
!  with the \emph{New Font Selection Scheme}~(\NFSS), \SLiTeX, \AmSLaTeX,
!
!It was They who made NFSS and distributed modified LaTeX, claiming it
!was still just LaTex2.09.  This caused the crisis that necessitated
!LaTeX2e.

!Donald Arseneau                         a...@reg.triumf.ca

So, why does not everyone stick to Plain TeX???? Then the Problem
goes away and They can mess about to Their hearts content!!!!!!<G>

Dave Rogers

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More options May 5 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: Sami Sozuer <soz...@optics.ph.msstate.edu>
Date: 1995/05/05
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
a...@reg.triumf.ca (Donald Arseneau) wrote:

[...]

>   Welcome to \LaTeXe, the new standard version of the \LaTeX{} Document
>   Preparation System.
>   [...]
>   The previous version of \LaTeX{} was known as \LaTeX~2.09.

>It was They who made NFSS and distributed modified LaTeX, claiming it
>was still just LaTex2.09.  This caused the crisis that necessitated
>LaTeX2e.

I agree wholeheartedly with this observation. Especially since latex3 is
in the works and so on, it seems like a lot of the confusion was unnecessary.

But then you buy books precisely to sort out confusion, of course ...

Sami Sozuer

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More options May 9 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk (Grendelsbane Geatwealda)
Date: 1995/05/09
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

In article <3o971e$...@bell.maths.tcd.ie>, t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy) writes: >In fact I think LaTeX2e is very good. >I'd like to see LaTeX used much more widely. >One reason why it is not, in my opinion, >is that there are a number of small but niggling problems >which put off non-TeX users. >The numbering system is one of them. >Perhaps dating programs rather than numbering them >is a good idea -- but it isn't what is normally done, >so it presents a small obstacle to the newcomer. Hmm. Good point, as the confounded teacher said. BUT just because dating programs is not usual does not mean it is an obstacle to the newcomer - if your unusual way of doing things is very clear and very much easier to understand than the usual way, it should attract people. Why else have GUIs taken off? There is of course the question of whether version dating *is* clear enough and easy enough to understand to attract people. Let's look at a numbered program like TeX. How would a newcomer know that TeX 3.14159 (I think I've got it right) is the latest version? If the version were given as (let's say) TeX 01/06/94, you could be fairly sure you had something fairly modern. Just numbering programs can be confusing: WordPerfect has different version numbering for Windows, MS-Dos, and Macs. It's easy to get in a tizzy if you have to refer to all of them, trying to remember whether WP 2 is a modern version under MS-Dos or not. Dated versions would avoid that confusion because a recent version date would indicate a recent version (er, am I labouring that point?) Admittedly, LaTeX2e as a name is a bit daft and I can see that putting people off, but I reckon dating versions is so much more sensible and easier to understand that people wouldn't be put off. I reckon there's two main reasons LaTeX isn't more widely used: 1) You can't start using it without a manual and/or quite a lot of help 2) You can't install it and use it on most systems without having a pretty good idea of what's going on (Andrew Treverrow's OzTeX being a notable exception, but that's a Mac version so it should be...) Just my thoughts, anyway. What do you think? Have fun, Rowland. Ah! Here be dragons lurking in the rains and mists! Here, in the land that time forgot, where the email servers stalk the earth: wild and untamed. Some call it Lancashire. Rowland the all-round good egg might be found at: | Why bother? rjm1...@kirk.acs.bolton.ac.uk or | rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk or even | Because it feels good, mbhz...@afs.mcc.ac.uk | that's why. ----====:::: Disclaimers? We don' need no stinkin' disclaimers. ::::====---- You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 9 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk (Grendelsbane Geatwealda) Date: 1995/05/09 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <3o90d1...@lyra.csx.cam.ac.uk>, r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) writes: >I have it on good authority that the$2_\varepsilon$was dreamt up by >Addison-Wesley marketing loonies. Ah! *Those* marketing people. Now I understand. Can I shoot them, daddy? Rowland (humdrum McDonnell, I'm afraid. But I like my alias...) Ah! Here be dragons lurking in the rains and mists! Here, in the land that time forgot, where the email servers stalk the earth: wild and untamed. Some call it Lancashire. Rowland the all-round good egg might be found at: | Why bother? rjm1...@kirk.acs.bolton.ac.uk or | rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk or even | Because it feels good, mbhz...@afs.mcc.ac.uk | that's why. ----====:::: Disclaimers? We don' need no stinkin' disclaimers. ::::====---- You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 12 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) Date: 1995/05/12 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <1MAY199520372...@reg.triumf.ca>, Donald Arseneau <a...@reg.triumf.ca> wrote: >I [...] compelled to stir up some mud about how the guide continues... > ...unfortunate result: incompatible \LaTeX{} formats came into use at > different sites. This included standard \LaTeX~2.09', \LaTeX{} built > with the \emph{New Font Selection Scheme}~(\NFSS), \SLiTeX, \AmSLaTeX, >It was They who made NFSS and distributed modified LaTeX, claiming it >was still just LaTex2.09. This caused the crisis that necessitated >LaTeX2e. If you talk to them, they admit that it was a mistake to distribute it. _I_ didn't foresee the end effect of what they were doing when they did it; in the circumstances, I feel disinclined to blame them because they didn't either (despite the fact that they're a hell of a lot cleverer than I am and *ought* to have seen ;-). -- Robin (Campaign for Real Radio 3) Fairbairns r...@cl.cam.ac.uk U of Cambridge Computer Lab, Pembroke St, Cambridge CB2 3QG, UK <a href="http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/users/rf/robin.html">Private page</a> You must Sign in before you can post messages. To post a message you must first join this group. Please update your nickname on the subscription settings page before posting. You do not have the permission required to post. More options May 14 1995, 3:00 am Newsgroups: comp.text.tex From: r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) Date: 1995/05/14 Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ? In article <3o9j69$...@ionews.io.org>, Patrick TJ McPhee <p...@io.org> wrote:

>I will defend the LaTeX team against most charges.  They work hard for
>no pay, and continually improve and extend the program.  They are
>not millionaires, and they are not part of a world-wide conspiracy
>to subjugate humanity.

Both of these assertions are patently true.

>                        They do not have the slightest clue what
>version numbers are for.

This is utter rubbish.  They know as well as I (and for all I know,
you) do what version numbers are for.

>                          [...]
>With the new release of LaTeX, the version number was finally changed, but
>the way in which it was changed caused an almost unbelievable amount of
>confusion.  Christopher's comment above is indicative of this.  LaTeX2e
>is indeed the replacement for LaTeX 2.09.  Why, you might ask, was it not
>called LaTeX 2.1, if this is truly the case.  Because the LaTeX team, although
>hard workers with the best interests of the community at heart, does not have
>the slightest clue what version numbers are for.  At least now there are
>patch levels.

Codswallop.

>% So, you % could say the 'e' stands for "extended" or "enhanced" or
>% something.
>When, in fact, it stands for `epsilon'.  I think this gives a good handle
>on how the team, or the part of it involved in coming up with new version
>numbers, thinks.  [...]

I've said it before, and I say it again: "2e" was not a lunatic idea
of a team of highly competent computer scientists and and
mathematicians who have taken it upon themselves to provide us with
some remarkably good software, it was the idea of Addison-Wesley's
marketing department.

Frank had come up with this idea of writing The LaTeX Companion as a
means of earning money to keep the LaTeX 3 project afloat (the
voluntary contributions we're all asked for as we sign up as members
of the various TeX user groups don't provide enough money for the
rather spartan existence the team has).  Addison-Wesley agreed to
publish the book.  *Then* Lamport and the team agreed that 2e was a
good idea, and A-W were launched into the business of publishing a
second edition of Lamport, too.  So they asked what the new version
was called, and were (presumably) met with some lameness (after all,
Lamport didn't have a terribly good version numbering structure); the
rest you see before you.  The \varepsilon (rather than just \epsilon)
was A-W's idea, too.

Version numbers proceed in a perfectly regular way: they go
"1994/06/01", "1994/12/01" and so on.  (These plainly aren't dates; I
was using something with the latter version number in November, and it
was released to the world on 1994/12/17.)  In addition, as you
correctly noted, there are in-between versions called patch levels.
--
Robin (Campaign for Real Radio 3) Fairbairns     r...@cl.cam.ac.uk
U of Cambridge Computer Lab, Pembroke St, Cambridge  CB2 3QG, UK
<a href="http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/users/rf/robin.html">Private page</a>

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More options May 15 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk (Grendelsbane Geatwealda)
Date: 1995/05/15
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

Just a thought: couldn't the info above be bunged in the FAQ?

Have fun etc.,
Rowland.

Ah!  Here be dragons lurking in the rains and mists!  Here, in the land that
time forgot, where the email servers stalk the earth: wild and untamed.
Some call it Lancashire.
Rowland the all-round good egg might be found at: |  Why bother?
rjm1...@kirk.acs.bolton.ac.uk or                |
rjm1...@bolton.ac.uk or even                    |  Because it feels good,
mbhz...@afs.mcc.ac.uk                           |  that's why.
----====::::  Disclaimers?  We don' need no stinkin' disclaimers.  ::::====----

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More options May 20 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu>
Date: 1995/05/20
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) wrote:
>In article <3o9j69$...@ionews.io.org>, Patrick TJ McPhee <p...@io.org> wrote: >>I will defend the LaTeX team against most charges. They work hard for >>no pay, and continually improve and extend the program. They are >>not millionaires, and they are not part of a world-wide conspiracy >>to subjugate humanity. >Both of these assertions are patently true. Well, not so fast Robin. We don't really know that do we? In order to know that we would have to know exactly how many copies of the Companion and the LaTeX manual were sold and exactly how much royalty they have recieved from those. These days one doesn't have to be a genius to do simple arithmetic. Let's try an estimate of those figures based on an ultra conservative model: There are over 2000 colleges in the US alone. Let's suppose 10 people on the average buy the LaTeX manual in each college per year. That's 20,000 copies at$41 a piece, which is a healthy $800,000. Let's assume 10 percent royalty for the author, we end up with$80,000 / year. Not bad at all. And we haven't even
considered the European market, where the price of the
book is nearly twice that in the US.

So, you see, there isn't much room here for sentimental
babblings. As much as I might admire your dedication, I
also happen to think it's misplaced.

Or, in plain English, get a life pal :-)

Sami Sozuer

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More options May 20 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns)
Date: 1995/05/20
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
In article <3pks6b$...@nntp.msstate.edu>, Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu> wrote: >r...@cl.cam.ac.uk (Robin Fairbairns) wrote: >>In article <3o9j69$...@ionews.io.org>, Patrick TJ McPhee <p...@io.org> wrote:
>>>I will defend the LaTeX team against most charges.  They work hard for
>>>no pay, and continually improve and extend the program.  They are
>>>not millionaires, and they are not part of a world-wide conspiracy
>>>to subjugate humanity.

>>Both of these assertions are patently true.

>Well, not so fast Robin.  [followed by some spurious arithmetic]

I can assure Mr. Sozuer that while (some of) the members of the LaTeX
3 team are better off than I am (on a research associate's salary), I
_know_ that none of them are rich in the way that he seems to suppose.

I don't in fact own a copy of Lamport's second edition, so I can't
tell if it makes claims about where the royalties go (Lamport is not
an active member of the team).  The author's royalties for the
Companion go to the LaTeX 3 project; this is an interesting situation,
since only one of the three authors is part of the team.

The only actual disbursement from the LaTeX 3 project funds that I
know of was to pay a team member's fare to TUG94 (not his conference
fees, you understand: just his fare).

Mr. Sozuer's estimate of the proportion of the sale price that goes to
the author (10% !!!) will no doubt leave him sorely disappointed if
and when he comes to write books himself.
--
Robin (Campaign for Real Radio 3) Fairbairns     r...@cl.cam.ac.uk
U of Cambridge Computer Lab, Pembroke St, Cambridge  CB2 3QG, UK
<a href="http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/users/rf/robin.html">Private page</a>

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More options May 21 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu>
Date: 1995/05/21
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

It amazes me that someone in this day and age can have
such a pathetic level of comprehension of the English
language, especially if that someone happens to be a red
blooded Englishman :-)

Read the post again Robin, It says we DON'T know that these
statements are "patently" true. Where exactly is that
"patent" you're talking about?

Why don't we have someone from AW post here, for informational
purposes only, how many copies of these books have been sold
and what the royalties on those were, so there won't be any
confusion. Simple as that. If I was wrong, I'm perfectly
willing to accept that.

>The author's royalties for the
>Companion go to the LaTeX 3 project; this is an interesting situation,
>since only one of the three authors is part of the team.

Wrong again. Read that section in the Companion again.
It says HALF the royalties go to the Latex3 project.
Half, meaning 50 per cent, or put more simply, one out of two.
According to the law of conservation of dollars, the other
dollar must end up some place, and I have no clue where.

Sorry, but as long as you keep making a sitting duck out of
yourself, some loser like me won't be able to resist the
temptation :-)

I put lots of smileys there just in case :-)

Sami Sozuer

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More options May 22 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy)
Date: 1995/05/22
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu> writes:
>It says HALF the royalties go to the Latex3 project.
>Half, meaning 50 per cent, or put more simply, one out of two.
>According to the law of conservation of dollars, the other
>dollar must end up some place, and I have no clue where.

(1) The LaTeX Companion (Goossens, Mitelbach & Samarin)
in a very fine book, in my opinion.
Anyone who intends using LaTeX should get it.

(2) If the authors give half their royalties to the LaTeX3 project,
they are being incredibly generous.

(3) If they make a lot of money, it is because the book is very good,
and lots of people buy it.
Good luck to them.

--
Timothy Murphy
e-mail: t...@maths.tcd.ie
tel: +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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More options May 22 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu>
Date: 1995/05/22
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?

t...@maths.tcd.ie (Timothy Murphy) wrote:
>Sami Sozuer <soz...@Ra.MsState.Edu> writes:

>>It says HALF the royalties go to the Latex3 project.
>>Half, meaning 50 per cent, or put more simply, one out of two.
>>According to the law of conservation of dollars, the other
>>dollar must end up some place, and I have no clue where.

[sales pitch omitted]

>(2) If the authors give half their royalties to the LaTeX3 project,
>they are being incredibly generous.

A high school student could see that the "Latex3 project"
is not exactly a UNICEF program to feed hungry children.

>(3) If they make a lot of money, it is because the book is very good,
>and lots of people buy it.
>Good luck to them.

In that case what was that "patently true" bit about these
poor hard-working good samaritans, oh, the Latex3 "team."

It just doesn't wash.

Sami Sozuer

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More options May 22 1995, 3:00 am
Newsgroups: comp.text.tex
From: jcrig...@theopolis.orl.mmc.com (Jim Crigler)
Date: 1995/05/22
Subject: Re: LaTeX Flame 1: Why can't They count ?
After reading the recent exchange among Sozuer, Fairbairns and Murpy (and
I think others but the older articles have expired here), I have only one
comment:  If the oxygen level is getting so low in Starkville (the town in
which Mississippi State University is located), should I urge my parents
and brothers to move away?

Jim

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