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Re: Generating pdf in base
On Sat, 5 Jul 2014 20:08:02 +0000
David Holland <dholland-docs%netbsd.org@localhost> wrote:
> Another possibility is to write a PDF driver for the groff we have.
> This is still work, but possibly not that much (e.g. maybe one could
> rewrite the upstream gplv3 Perl groff driver in Lua...);
Translation from Perl to C++ is straightforward. A couple of years
ago, as an experiment, I re-coded the examples from the Camel book in
C++. When C++ is supplied with appropriate libraries (simple things
that I wrote myself) the converted linecount is roughly 1:1. That
would be a 3200-line gropdf written in C++.
(The only exception was Perl's eval, decidedly non-trivial in C++!)
I participate in the groff list and admire what Deri James hath
wrought. If there is interest here, I could broach the subject of
whether a C++ version would be acceptable upstream. I'm not
volunteering, but I do think it would make a nice SoC project.
> on the other hand the artefact it produces is of limited long-term
> value. And it's not like groff is doing a super job of typesetting
> the articles...
Which is the worst one, in your opinion? I guess I haven't read every
one, because I don't remember any typesetting problems.
You mention semantic markup more than once, as though it's valuable.
What do you hope to do with it? As far as I'm concerned it's a lost
cause *and* unimportant. The promise of "write one, render anywhere"
remains, after two decades, unfulfilled. Once you acknowledge that, the
use of -ms seems downright precient.
> and there's long been a desire to kick groff out of base.
I don't understand the desire to kick groff out of base unless it's to
be replaced by heirloom troff. I realize troff qua troff is not
fashionable anymore but, then, neither is NetBSD, er, anymore.
I'm not interested in a markup-language tug of war. I declare flatly
that no equivalent to groff exists. For one, show me the equivalent of
pic. For two, show me a graphing package with a built-in typesetter.
By the way, groff recently added an implementation of the IDEAL
language, an intriguing improvement on its successors, bar none.
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