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 Sender: Mailing list for the LaTeX3 project <[log in to unmask]> Subject: Re: xcontents From: Javier Bezos <[log in to unmask]> Date: Wed, 24 Nov 1999 12:48:50 +0100 Reply-To: Mailing list for the LaTeX3 project <[log in to unmask]> Parts/Attachments: text/plain (96 lines) > > It so happens that I'm working in a new release of a package for > > formatting of toc entries which already provides such a kind of > > indexes in the currently available version. However, adapting > >may i (we have a look) at the 2e version of this package? i don't mind it >being in a non-distributable/working state as long as the underlying ideas >can be looked at without too much trouble > >nevertheless i'm eager to see you trying to produce a template or two for it >since only this way we can see where the template concept needs corrections Perhaps the main difference is that both the label and the page are not automatically placed by the corresponding command but they should be given explicitly. I finally became conviced that something like  ...  { (\textit{\theconstentspage})}  ... was easier to understand and modify than two arguments with the pre- and postcode:  ...  { (\begingroup\itshape}  ...  {\endgroup)}  ... or a command for formatting the page (with an implicit argument):  \def\tocpagefmt#1{ (\textit{#1})}  ...  {\tocpagefmt}  ... but no doubt there are other views on that. template provides a more readable version of the latter: number-format = \ (\textit{#1}), but my implementation will follow the first procedure for comparison purposes. Another difference is how the text is shaped: the text and leaders are in a rectangular block, with hanging label and page (provided the usual format is used). The original package provides a single command which only performs code related to how entries are placed in the toc, leaving the format of the entry itself to some hooks where you may use a few extra commands with the page number, the label, the leaders, paragraph format, etc. Of course, this approach has some disavantages, for example the necessity of defining *all* of parameters when redefining a toc entry; but, as I say in the documentation, it is not intended to just readjust the current format by a casual user. Now, here templates can help, because some few templates can provide the basic formats (sharing the same code) and creating new templates could be easier. However implementing new packages could be more complex, because a level of evaluation is added. The following trivial example illustrates what I mean. The usual way is: \def\defineit#1{%   \def\it{#1}} The template way is (very, very simplified) \def\defineit#1{%   \def\@it{#1}   \def\it{\@it}} This extra level has many implications, because we cannot define \it literally (ie, exactly as given by the argument) and protection becomes a critical point: \def\defineit{%   \def\@it{#1}   \protected@xdef\it{\@it}} Temporary variables also become our daily bread. Will this extra level of complexity pays? How will it affect the memory usage? > > it to the suggested templates is turning out to be more difficult > > as I expected because most of things are handled in a quite > > different way. The same applies to partial tocs. However, > >can you try to explain why or how partial tocs are a problem or handled quite >differently in your approach? (not that they are yet really handled in >xcontents at all Mmmm... Perhaps the main difference is that xcontents doesn't handle them at all! :-) More thoughs when I send the package (probably next week). \bye Javier Bezos