Paul Thompson wrote:
> One lack of LaTeX and friends that I have NEVER understood is that there are no character-manipulation tools.
> In many languages, there are a large number of such tools.
> substr - get part of a string
> scan - break string into pieces by several markers (usually can specify)
> index - determine if string has substring
> and there are 20-30 more too
Part of the issue (I suspect) is that most of these have to be done
quite slowly in TeX. So it is often better to do something specific to
the issue at hand (for example, a delimited macro).
> Admittedly this goes toward making LaTeX more of a programming language,
Part of the idea of LaTeX3, so worth adding to the mix. I'd hope that
some basics might be in, with the idea of a Lua-based extension being
written as well (to gain speed if LuaTeX is available).