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Sebastian Rahtz wrote --
>  > As much as I care about any other large number of people doing things
>  > with documents, yes.
>
> well, the issue is how large does the group get for you to notice it

Agreed: or rather before "we" noticed it.  As ever, this depends on
distance (and other more political factors) as well as size.

>
>  > as you suggest, but if that is all we need then we should leave out
>  > the TeX bit and just:
>  >
>  >   make an even better formatting engine
> yes please pretty please. keep the TeX macro language for those who
> like it as a means of communication, but disengage it from the
> formatting engine.

Yes; exactly what I was suggesting.

>
> oh hell now we are back full circle. and i have  a feeling Chris and I
> are simply agreeing that
>  a) the (La)TeX language in all its glory should be cut down for the
>     communication subset (somehow!)
>  b) work on formatting engines should be independent of TeX markup
>
> which is a trite pair of conclusions,

as ever:-).


> and proabbly the basis for NTS
> anyway.

Hmm, I wonder?

>
>  > > algorithms for float placement....
>  >
>  > Oh please, yes please!  No one ever sent me one yet.
>
> the chattering classes have one. it is `when it looks nice'

Funny, now you remind me, I do seem to have heard of that famous
algorithm before.  Another favourite (usually from computing people)
is: "why do you need me to give you an algorithm, it's obvious what to
do".


chris