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On Tue, 13 Feb 2001, David Carlisle wrote:

> > On Windows, both MiKTeX and fpTeX have it.
> both web2c aren't they?

I don't know if MiKTeX is web2c. It wasn't, but it may be now. I'll look.

> > We're asking distributions to
> > support Omega, we're not asking users to use some certain distributions.
>
> and Y&Y? and vtex and pctex and trutex (but trutex has omega I believe)
> (and on the Mac, textures? oztex?, and MVS mainfame?) some of
> the commercial systems have diverted greatly from the original Web
> source to offer things like dynamic memory allocation. probably they
> will move to a unicode based tex once sufficiently stable, but
> are you really ready to tell them to commit resources now?

If only they want to upgrade to LaTeX3. You're right, I agree, but I
think there are upgraders and there are stickers. Upgraders feel better
when they hear about new features, even when they don't need them. And
there are some of those guys in the GNU/Linux/Open Source that will
even help adding features that they won't ever use.

There's another problem with Omega: it seems that it's going to be
LGPLed. This will arise another bunch of question.

> I don't think there is any chance of having a replacement for LaTeX
> that was not going to work with pdftex (or pdfomega) as without
> pdftex a large part of the existing users wouldn't move to a new system
> and many  uses for xml typesetting would be lost. Having a tex
> system that produces pdf with type1 fonts is so much more comforting to
> people who want to have tex as a black box typesetter for xml systems.

I get it better now. A pdftex+Omega merger is more important than a
LaTeX+Omega.

> Unless a system works with all the major tex distributions (either
> because it uses standard TeX, or because the TeX distributions
> distribute omega or pdftex or etex) it will never replace LaTeX for many
> purposes.
>
> On the other hand the two versions don't have to be completely
> different. For example xmltex shows that utf8, cjk and the others show
> utf8 handling isn't impossible with TeX. Given that one would presumably
> still have the \' syntax, and also ready composed unicode characters in
> many cases, just saying that combining characters don't work if running
> over a standard TeX wouldn't be the end of the world.

I somehow agree.