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Joseph Wright wrote:
> On 06/03/2011 14:03, Arno Trautmann wrote:
>> Well, first, it would show the development. I know several people who
>> have lost interest in following LaTeX3 development because there is no
>> visible progress.
> 
> Unfortunately, 'progress' in this regard I suspect means 'an actual
> LaTeX3 format'. Can't promise that any time soon, I'm afraid.

I don't think that only an actual l3 format is progress, but anything
that is different from the current setup. In my eyes, a
LaTeX2ε+expl3-format would already be a big step.

> Also, it is unpleasant to tell someone about how great
>> LaTeX3 syntax is but having to tell they have to load a package on top
>> of l2ε.
> 
> Well that's also true of any other change - LaTeX2e will not alter, so
> it's not as though they'll simply be able to expect 'LaTeX' to suddenly
> gain new abilities without either (1) loading packages or (2) using a
> different format.

Sure, it's not a logical argument, but more like the feeling of
something fancy on your machine …

>> Second, the loading of expl3 stuff would be much faster which would be
>> favorable especially for short tests – often the preamble takes much
>> longer to load than the actual compilation time of the document.
> 
> That is true :-)
> 
> I'm not opposed to the idea,

☺

> so here's something to think about. My view
> is that for a LaTeX3 format the approach should be rather more similar
> to ConTeXt than LaTeX2e when it comes to engines and output mode. So
> I've imagined
> 
>   $ latex3 --dvi --pdftex <file>
>   $ latex3 --pdf --luatex <file>

I find this horrible. It would be easy if the standard engine would be
luaTeX with pdf output and other machines could be used as pdflatex3 or
similar.

> an so forth (with --xetex ignoring --dvi for the obvious reasons).  Does
> a similar scheme make sense for a hypothetical 'latex2x'? (I'm going
> with 'x' for 'extended', and also for 'like LaTeX2e, but clearly a bit
> further along. Of course, there would need to be some defaults for the
> above - I guess I'd favour pdfTeX in PDF mode at present.

For l2x (I like the name!), I'd stick with the names as they are.

> Second question: anything else that should be included that is not in
> the combined 'release' material (expl3, xparse, xtemplate, xcoffins)?
> These do load various bits and pieces (for example, graphicx), but I'd
> like to at least add fixltx2e to the above.

As Philipp suggested, fontspec for luaTeX and XeTeX engines. Maybe even
xltxtra for XeTeX and some lua packages for luaTeX? But that is no
LaTeX3 stuff anymore …

cheers
Arno