LyX 1.3.0 released

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John Levon

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Feb 11, 2003, 7:20:24 PM2/11/03
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Public release of LyX version 1.3.0
===================================

We are glad to announce the release of LyX 1.3.0.

As with the previous major version 1.2.0, many things make this new
release an exciting one. One of the major projects that has been going
on behind the scenes is the so-called GUI-independence project. We are
glad to announce that version 1.3.0 shows the first results of this.
LyX now comes in two flavours: Qt-LyX and xforms-LyX!

Although this is the most visible change in version 1.3, this should not
hide the fact that the `under the hood' changes to the code have again
been very important. A detailed list can be found below.

In case you are wondering what LyX is, here is what
http://www.lyx.org/ has to say on the subject:

LyX is an advanced open source document processor that encourages an
approach to writing based on the structure of your documents, not
their
appearance. LyX lets you concentrate on writing, leaving details of
visual layout to the software.

LyX runs on many Unix platforms (including MacOS X), OS/2, and under
Windows/Cygwin. Note that all these ports use the same xforms
interface
and therefore need an X server.

You can download LyX 1.3.0 here :

ftp://ftp.lyx.org/pub/lyx/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz
ftp://ftp.devel.lyx.org/pub/lyx/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz

and it should shortly propagate to the following mirrors :

ftp://ftp.sdsc.edu/pub/other/lyx/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz
ftp://ftp.lip6.fr/pub/lyx/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz
ftp://gd.tuwien.ac.at/publishing/tex/lyx/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz
ftp://ftp.ntua.gr/pub/X11/LyX/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz
ftp://ftp.icm.edu.pl/vol/rzm0/lyx/stable/lyx-1.3.0.tar.gz


Prebuild binaries (mainly rpms for linux distributions) should soon be
available at
ftp://ftp.lyx.org/pub/lyx/bin/1.3.0

If you find what you think is a bug in LyX 1.3.0, you may either
e-mail the LyX developers' mailing list (lyx-...@lists.lyx.org), or
open
a bug report at http://bugzilla.lyx.org

If you're having trouble using the new version of LyX, or have a
question,
first check out http://www.lyx.org/help/, and e-mail the LyX users' list
(lyx-...@lists.lyx.org) if you can't find an answer there.

Enjoy!

The LyX team.


New features
============

** Qt frontend

This is of course the most visible new feature. This frontend supports
either Qt 2.x or 3.x and is mostly feature complete. Note that some
of the dialogs are slightly different in design, but are generally
functionally equivalent.

** Xforms frontend

The advent of the Qt frontend does not mean that the historical xforms
frontend is dead. Actually, it is still the one which is the best
implemented, because we have had more time to polish it. In this
release,
most of the dialogs have been redesigned to be tighter.

Note also that the xforms library has been very recently updated to
version 1.0. This version has been released under the LGPL (Lesser
General Public License), and the availability of the source means that
many bugs that have been plaguing LyX have been fixed in xforms. You
are advised to upgrade to xforms 1.0 to enjoy all these new fixes.
In fact, LyX 1.3.0 no longer supports versions of xforms older than
0.89.5.
Moreover, support for xforms older than 1.0 will be removed in the next
release. You have been warned ;-)

In most cases the dialogs have been designed to make it impossible to
input
invalid parameters. The exception to this rule is the input of length
data.
Power LaTeX users can still input obtuse "glue lengths", but the widgets
are
highlighted in red if this input is invalid or incomplete. This visual
feedback makes it easy to see why LyX won't allow you to Apply your
changes.

** Gnome frontend

Unfortunately, the development of the Gnome frontend has mostly
stopped recently and we have therefore chosen to disable it. We
strongly invite anyone willing to revive this port to volunteer on the
developer's list.

** Instant preview

preview-latex is an emacs package for LaTeX that allows "instant
previews"
of LaTeX code, so you can immediately see the visual rendering of the
LaTeX in the document. Its project home page can be found at
http://sourceforge.net/projects/preview-latex. With the help of David
Kastrup, the author, LyX 1.3.0 can harness this functionality to
allow instant previews in the LyX window of math equations and
figures. This feature can be immensely useful, ensuring that the
rendering of your equation will look right in the final output. The
preview is only displayed (if enabled) when you're not editing the
actual equation, so it's unobtrusive too.

** Math editor

There have been a few visible and some not-so-visible changes. On the
visible side we have better visual feedback regarding the structure of
a formula, showing the nesting by small purple decorations in the
formula itself and revealing the names of the nesting levels in the
minibuffer. There is now native support for symbols from the wasy
package containing e.g. the zodiac symbols. New also is the internal
structure of font changes which are now proper "insets", just like
anything else from a square root to an array. This not only simplifies
the code greatly but also allows the same editing tricks as for the
"regular" math. However, it was not possible to tweak the visible
behaviour to mimic 1.2 in all cases, so this might take some time to
get accustomed to. On the pro side, the new structure allowed
support for LaTeX's \mbox and \fbox to be implemented and general
"switching back to text mode within math", so a lot of "evil red text"
trickery is not needed anymore. The most visible changes are the
following:

- Pressing { and } will insert LaTeX's \{ and \} which show up as { }
in the printout. To get LaTeX's {} nesting, you need to type \{.

- Fonts changes now really nest. Repeated application of a font change
will result in nested font changes! To remove a font change without
removing the "contents", it is now possible to "pull the argument"
like in other insets, i.e. put the cursor in the first position of
the inset and press 'backspace'.

** Reading old files

LyX now has a new script lyx2lyx which enables the reading of any file
produced by LyX versions as old as 0.12. Work is in progress on files
created with LyX 0.10 (LyX 1.4 time-line) and still older files are
in the forge. Basically if lyx wrote it LyX will read it. :-)

There is also a strong demand to be able to read files produced by
_newer_ versions of LyX. While lyx2lyx has the infrastructure in place
to do such things, the filters to `downgrade' LyX files (from 1.3.0 to
1.2.x, for example) have not yet been written.

** Miscellaneous changes

- LyX now automatically uses TeX fonts for screen rendering of math
equations if they are available (it is not necessary anymore to
configure your font server).

- The Insert>Short Title allows the addition of an optional text
for section headings and captions that is designed to be used in
tables of contents.

- The Insert>Float>Floatflt Figure menu item restores the ability
to wrap text around an image which was present in 1.1.6 and
removed in 1.2.0

- If you configure with --with-pspell (which uses the PSpell library for
spellchecking), you will be able to automatically spell-check
multi-language documents, assuming you have the right dictionaries
installed.


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