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Vladimir Volovich <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mailing list for the LaTeX3 project <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 16 Jun 1997 00:10:42 +0400
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Werner Lemberg wrote:

> Have a look into my CJK package. Besides support for Chinese etc. you will
> find an interface for Mule which allows the use of various latin encodings
> (and Vietnamese) at the same time.

Oh, you are doing a great work! So many languages are being developed!

> My goal is to extend this---there are
> so many language specific solutions which can't be made more general (e.g.
> Japanese TeX). I don't like this, and I will always try to find a
> multilingual solution. For example, you can embed Babel seamlessly into
> the CJK package (provided you have only 7bit input encoding for non-CJK
> languages: this will be done by the Mule-CJK interface).

I did not see MULE yet (I have only xemacs-19.14).

> > Moreover, do the _one_ default lccode+uccode settings conform to _all_
> > languages (which are already TeXized)?
> Of course not. But it is better to try to follow this standard if
> possible. And it *is* possible for Russian to use these settings.

Well, I agree. But
 * the (widely used) LCY encoding does not correspond to
   the default settings of lccode.
 * Until new T2-based LH fonts will not be widely available,
   LCY will be the main encoding.
 * Again, when we will use T2-based fonts, we'll have to have
   russian letters to be active chars (to translate from input encoding
   into TeX's internal encoding---T2), and this has some disadvantages.
 * Because of `strange' (non-monomorphic ;-)) settings of lccode and uccode values for
   characters "19, "1a, "9d and "9e in T1 encoding (this fact is mentioned in
   T2 home page), these positions will not probably used in T2 encoding :-(
   May be, it would possible to change the lccode and uccode values for these
   characters in T1?

> > > > Next, when somebody uses Russian language in his TeX document,
> > > > very offten the other language(s) used in the same document
> > > > will have the codes of it's letters below 128. So,
> > > > why not to allow Babel to change lccodes for Russian
> > > > in this case?
> Well, think of multilingualism. The next one will mix Russian with old
> Greek (where the same problems are) in one paragraph. What then?

First, this case of mixing Russian with old Greek is not what I meant above.
Second, there is also a solution---to set hyphenation places explicitly.
Probably, in such situation (of multilingualism) there will be one
`predominant' language, and the amount of words of the second languane
will be small enough to allow to use explict hyphenation
(at least, before the day, when we'll have Omega+E-TeX+LaTeX3 available ;-) ).

Of course, I'm speaking about the situation when one of used lagnuages
will be too hard (or impossible) to conform to T1's lccode&uccode settings.
I hope, that Russian(T2) + old Greek is not the case.

> > 2) use TeX Code Pages (TCP). This has advantage because it is universal,
> >    and lets us preserve catcodes of translated characters.
> >    But TCP are not supported by all TeX implementations.
> only emTeX, AFAIK. Non-portable.

And is e-TeX or Omega having in plans to implement this?
Why other TeX implementation did not implemented this? It seems to
be not too hard. :-(

> > 3) declare all _letters_ of this language to be non-letters (!)
> >    from the TeX's point of view -- i.e. declare them active characters.
> >    But this approach has some disadvattages:
> only for the input encoding!
> >    * letters are now `not letters' -- so it becomes impossible
> >      to define and use macroses with names consisting of letters of this language.
> this is bad anyway, since TeX does not have a mechanism for separating
> control characters from normal TeX (Omega can do this...)

Could you explain what you mean?
I mean that when russian letters have the same input encoding and internal TeX incoding
(the case of LCY), then these characters will have catcodes equal to 11 (letter).
So it will be possible to use macroses with russian names.
It is impossible if russian characters are active.

[ However, this possibility (to have macroses with russian names) is not *vitally* important. ]

> >    * TeX log files become unreadable (because our fonts have encoding different
> >      from TeX's internal encoding). So it becobes very tricky to work with TeX.
> >      This, again, can be avoided by translating TeX log files `manually',
> >      but this approach is not applicable to all users...
> Have you ever seen a log file of my CJK package for Chinese? :-)

No. The only thing from CJK package I tried to play with, was a ttf2pk package,
which faied to work on my computer. ;-(

I can explain, why log files become unreadable.
To be readable, the encoding of russian characters in log files
must be the same as the input encoding (8 bit!).
But when TeX reads russian character (with code >= 0x80) in some
external encoding (say, koi-8) and translates this character to
the corresponding place in T2 table (therefore the character should be active),
then all russian letters which will go to log files (and to the screen)
in case of TeX errors, will have TeX internal encoding (T2), but *not*
the external encoding (koi-8). Am I right?
So, the log (and the screen) will be unreadable.

> > BTW, how one can make virtex (I use NTeX under Linux) or teTeX to
> > show characters with codes above 0x80 as normal characters?
> > In the case of emtex, it is possible to use options like `-o' and `-8'.
> > But I didn't find the way to do this with virtex.
> send a change file to Karl Berry, the author of web2c. It's not
> implemented.

> > > I want to change my own code to T2.
> >
> > BTW, do you have the new alpha version of LH fonts (with T2 encoding)?
> Oh! This is good news! Where can I get them?

They are not yet widely available. I hope that I'll get them soon,
and I'll inform you about this.

With best regards,