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Chris Rowley <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mailing list for the LaTeX3 project <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 15 Jun 1998 15:14:01 +0200
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In case anyone is misled about the Team's thinking on the intentions
of LaTeX3, I thought it would be useful to quote from the nearest
thing we have to an outline of our intentions: The LaTeX3 Project (in
the distributed file ltx3info.tex).

To get the context of these quotes you will need to read the whole document.

First, LaTeX3 is a "...  major new document processing system based on
 the principles pioneered by Leslie Lamport in the current \LaTeX".
Thus, unlike 2e, it is not, primarily, just a new version of LaTeX.

A lengthier quote:

"Further analysis of these deficiencies has shown that some of the
 problems are to be found in \LaTeX{}'s internal concepts and design.
 This project to produce a new version therefore involves thorough
 research into the challenges posed by new applications and by the use
 of \LaTeX{} as a formatter for a wide range of documents, \eg \SGML{}
 documents; on-line \PDF{} documents with hypertext links.

 This will result in a major re-implementation of large parts of the

Thus again it is clear that far more than extensions and enhancements
were, and are still, considered necessary.

I think that Frank has made it clear in his recent message that we are
aware of the implications of doing this, one of which is that current
packages could be redundant, and that this may no longer be what people

But we are reasonably certain that it will be far more difficult to
continue to build on a deeply flawed foundation than to build again
from scratch ... or, rather, from whatever the rest of the world has to
offer in the way of topography and building materials (to over-stretch
the metaphor).

Also note that the major reason for the redundancy of the packages
will be because the foundations (and below) are very different;
it will not be because the L3PL has a particular syntax or structure.