6:54 AM
To return to an old topic. Some time ago I was told that workarounds for underscores in text were a bad idea and would break things. But I have continuing problems with underscores in file names. For example, I'm calling this macro as follows:
\pdffile[blankpage, grid=false, gridbottomleft={(-4,-22)}, captioning,
cappos={(7,1)},
pagenum=1]{downloads/pmc_savings_account_interest_certificate.2017-2018.pdf}
And I get the following error:
! Missing $inserted. <inserted text>$
l.312 ...account_interest_certificate.2017-2018.pdf}
I'm not sure exactly where this error is coming from, but it is clearly because of the underscores.
And obviously inserting backslashes doesn't work, because then TeX can't find the file.

@FaheemMitha well clearly your \pdffile command is not correctly defined.

@UlrikeFischer Not correctly defined in what way?
Can you tell me what's wrong with the code?

7:10 AM
@FaheemMitha if you show a sensible minimal example.

0

Starting from MWE of very good user @Marian G. Pretty enumerate: fontawesome \documentclass{article} \usepackage{fontawesome} \usepackage{xcolor} \newcount\cnt \cnt=1 \newbox\battery \setbox\battery=\hbox\faBatteryFull \def\numberlabel{% \ifnum\the\cnt>4\relax \else {\tiny\sffamily\the\c...

How do you remove the space between the first and second row starting of my addendum? But it is a problem of the symbol? Thank you to everyone.

8:13 AM
Hey! Does somebody know: What do I have to set in

\tdplotsetmaincoords{60}{110}
\tdplotsetrotatedcoords{30}{45}{0}

to get a coordinate system like this?

@UlrikeFischer I think that's a sensible example. And in any case, I tested it (the version I posted online), and it doesn't show the problem. Which is odd.
I guess it's time for more TeX Debugging Fun. Yay.

@FaheemMitha no it isn't. As I already commented it is much to complicated. If you want to test reading of file names all the keys are unneeded.

In any case, it seems the problem lies elsewhere.

@MarcelKrüger it looks as if the new "notdef" code breaks with curious fonts like Yuanti.ttc with the error there are no glyphs in the subset.

@FaheemMitha that error means you are typesetting the filename not using it as a filename to include a file

8:38 AM
@DavidCarlisle Does passing it as an argument to a macro count as typesetting?
Because that seems hard to avoid.
I have some old code that also includes PDF files, which isn't showing the issue either. But the new code does. The version I posted online doesn't show the issue either. And that (online) version is very similar to my actual new code.
Oh, I see I'm including the filename as a caption. Duh.
Which actually seems reasonable. So, what should I do if I want to include the filename as a caption?
Temporarily make the underscore cat 12 for that string only? Is that possible? And if possible, is it a reasonable thing to do?

@FaheemMitha no
@FaheemMitha as guessed
@FaheemMitha \caption{zzz \texttt{\detokenize{foo_par_wibble.pdf}}}

@DavidCarlisle Ok. I'll try that.

@FaheemMitha so long as you don't have non-ascii letters (in which case you need to try a but harder)

@DavidCarlisle Just ASCII.
But the argument is a macro. So I had to throw in a couple of \expandafters. Which, somewhat to my surprise, worked.
I seem to remember that there is an alternative to \detokenize.
Ah, yes, \unexpanded. Though I can't remember if that is an extension thing or not.
An an ε-TeX primitive. So technically an extension, I suppose.

9:32 AM
@FaheemMitha \detokenize also etex (and \expanded won't help here)
@FaheemMitha exactly which is why Ulrike was right to say it was a bad example...

@DavidCarlisle ;-). I tried very hard not to write "I told you ... "

@UlrikeFischer ooh no blame
@DavidCarlisle she told you... :)
@UlrikeFischer ^^

@PauloCereda not David, Faheem ...

@DavidCarlisle What was a bad example? And a bad example of what?

@UlrikeFischer Ah :)

9:39 AM
1 hour ago, by Faheem Mitha
@UlrikeFischer I think that's a sensible example. And in any case, I tested it (the version I posted online), and it doesn't show the problem. Which is odd.

@FaheemMitha the code you linked too. It neither contains a caption, nor a file name with underscore and doesn't show the problem.

@PauloCereda you should have known I was not to blame

@UlrikeFischer It wasn't supposed to. It was posted in the context of a different question.

@DavidCarlisle apologies. :)

As it happens, it does contain a caption (of a sort), i.e. text inside a node, but the caption isn't invoked in that case. Which is why the error didn't show up.
Oh, no. Actually what I did there was override the default (which is the filename) with "FOOBAR". Which doesn't happen to have underscores.

9:45 AM
@FaheemMitha but you linked to it here in relation to the underscore chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/51106343#51106343 But for either question the code is far from minimal and not really good for isolating the issue.

@FaheemMitha that's why I asked for a sensible example for your new problem. It doesn't work well if you simply throw in some snippets and a "my code is more or less like this" and then let people get guess around. The first step in debugging is always to get from a vage "something is wrong" to a concrete "exactly this here is wrong".

I suppose a tracing would show where TeX choked on the underscore. Because the default message doesn't.
@DavidCarlisle @UlrikeFischer Apologies for my lack of science.
@DavidCarlisle I was looking for comments re pgfkeys usage. I guess I could post on Code Review, but they probably won't know or care.

@FaheemMitha no harm done but the question on site remains unanswered and would be easier to understand if you made the example more usable

As I recall, in that question, I didn't actually have a problem.
@DavidCarlisle About the pgfkeys usage? Yes, it is.

@FaheemMitha the error message you quote above seems fairly specific

9:49 AM
@DavidCarlisle The underscore thing? That's not part of the question I posted. I didn't ask a new question about the underscore thing.
@DavidCarlisle Yes, that's what I meant to say. It is unanswered re the pgfkeys usage.
I think someone (Henri Meinke) commented regarding that question that changing underscores to catcode 12 was a bad idea. But I didn't ask anything about underscores there.

10:19 AM
@UlrikeFischer I have to give a talk in two hours, I will look into it afterwards.

@MarcelKrüger I got a issue in the tracker promised in the evening, so don't hurry.

10:30 AM
@UlrikeFischer who can be blamed for hyperref \# breakage?

@DavidCarlisle Phelype!

@DavidCarlisle ;-), just looking, but I guess the problem is that # is active in the middle of the output.

Good morning to everybody.

@PauloCereda no hyperref isn't team code, so we have to blame @UlrikeFischer

@marmot My sincere welcome, I am glad. Good work and good morning.

10:33 AM
@DavidCarlisle I guess the same rule applies here: the last to join gets the blame. It was quite sneaky from you to trick me to accept the github access ;-)

@UlrikeFischer seems reasonable to me

@DavidCarlisle ooh let's blame Heiko
@Sebastiano ciao, have a good day too.

@PauloCereda Hi, and give also to you my best good day.
@DavidCarlisle Excuse me David why I have a blank space between the first and the second row from my addendum?
0

Starting from MWE of very good user @Marian G. Pretty enumerate: fontawesome \documentclass{article} \usepackage{fontawesome} \usepackage{xcolor} \newcount\cnt \cnt=1 \newbox\battery \setbox\battery=\hbox\faBatteryFull \def\numberlabel{% \ifnum\the\cnt>4\relax \else {\tiny\sffamily\the\c...

How can I take out this space? But is this a problem with the battery symbol?
@StevenB.Segletes My welcome and great answer for digital numbers.

10:54 AM
@Sebastiano why ping me? Looks like you have an answer already posted?

11:19 AM
@DavidCarlisle You are between best users. For this reason I have pinged you, The problem is the long text that it give me a little space. Excuse me se I have disturbed you.

@Sebastiano that is not how the site works.

11:42 AM
@Sebastiano Not nearly as good as an actual "digital clock" font

@Sebastiano because you removed the \smash command that sive quite carefully used to avoid this problem.

12:12 PM
@UlrikeFischer Kindest I not remember that I have removed \smash command. I didn't notice it at all. I was doing a thousand tests but nothing. Thank you very much
@UlrikeFischer He edited it afterwards so I was working with the old code ;-(
@Mensch Thank you very much for your concern about me on a current question of mine that I checked green a few minutes ago.

@Sebastiano You are welcome!

12:28 PM
The National Weather Service in Omaha, Nebraska, baked biscuits in a car Friday amid a major heat wave in the Northeast and Midwest... Within 45 minutes, the dough had begun to rise, the NWS said. After an hour, the pan had reached 175 degrees, and the tops of the biscuits were at 153 degrees. "This is a good time to remind everyone that your car does in fact get deadly hot. Look before you lock!," the NWS said... After baking in the sun for nearly eight hours, the biscuits were edible, but the middle remained "pretty doughy." The pan maxed out at a blazing 185 degrees.
@AlanMunn Nebraska seems to have a hot weather ^^ :)
Meanwhile, my playlist is playing Omaha, by Counting Crows. :)

@PauloCereda they have fahrenheit there yes?

@UlrikeFischer I hope so. :)

@PauloCereda ;-) but my baking experience says that it wouldn't take eight hours if this were celcius.

@UlrikeFischer ooh

@PauloCereda The heat has broken here. It's 18 right now and is only expected to go up to 25.

12:44 PM
@AlanMunn oh no

1:01 PM
@PauloCereda Oh no? This is a good thing. 35 and 98% humidity is no my idea of good weather.

@AlanMunn oh :)

1:12 PM
How could one test whether a macro is used where category code changes would have an effect (or to formulate it differently: how to find out whether I could use a verb in a given context)?

@Skillmon with difficulty
@Skillmon I can only think of one way but it's like the old test for being a witch. Dunk the suspect and if they drown they are innocent.
6
@Skillmon set the catcode of every character to "ignored" then test if you have a following character, if you have, then \verb would fail.

@DavidCarlisle weight with a duck?

1:28 PM
@PauloCereda not a duck but (possibly false legend) a ducking stool historyextra.com/period/medieval/…

@DavidCarlisle but wouldn't that result in something bad, too?
@DavidCarlisle I'd lose the first following character, with no means to get it back.

@Skillmon yes hence the reference to the drowning test....

@DavidCarlisle ooh

1:44 PM
@FaheemMitha My apologies for not replying yesterday. We use TeX in conjunction with a templating language to make our form letters, statements, and some reports. I make anything from notices to payment reminder letters, to hospital billing statements with TeX. I realize it's not the standard use case so I probably do have some uncommon questions. Thanks for the complements on the examples, as well!

@JamesDunlap I see. So you do contracting work for companies using TeX?
If so, I didn't realise that TeX had this kind of usage.
Do your clients know you use TeX?
I once "talked" online to someone (in the US, I think), who did bioinformatics contract work for universities using Common Lisp.
He said they didn't care what he used, as long as the work got done...
Also, what kind of templating language do you use? One of the Python ones?

@JamesDunlap Very nice! I did a showcase of generating bingo cards in one of our UK-TUG meetings! :) vimeo.com/241332536

2:03 PM
@Mensch My thank you...always.

2:56 PM
Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers

@FaheemMitha My company is platform for account receivables and collections management. We develop all the form letters and statements for our customers. They don't know what we use to generate them and they don't really care. We were drawn to TeX because the PDFs it creates are very consistent across printers and customer environments. Our HTML letters and reports simply don't print consistently by comparison.
@FaheemMitha We use Template Toolkit / Perl for our templating.

@JamesDunlap I see. Interesting. I guess there is no way of knowing who is or isn't using TeX.
Do you have significant in-house TeX expertise?
One complaint (or perhaps observation) I hear frequently is that it's not really possible to make a living as a TeX expert. Even though TeX is widely used.

3:42 PM
GITHUB IS HAVING SERVER ERRORS
THE HORROR
At least, I like the Wile E. Coyote reference. :)

@PauloCereda blame @PhelypeOleinik

@DavidCarlisle ooh

@DavidCarlisle I think my experimental branch push unknown causes are responsible.

@FaheemMitha I'm surprised more companies don't use it for their printing needs but I confess that it isn't the most intuitive implementation. I wouldn't describe us as having significant in-house TeX expertise. Myself and my development team are familiar enough with it to accomplish our objectives and communities like this are indispensable when we get stuck.

3:55 PM
@JamesDunlap Yes, that's what I figured. So you get by?

@FaheemMitha Having said that, I have searched for TeX experts to contract with when we get stuck but haven't had much luck finding somone.

It's a pity there is no existing way to fund TeX development with TeX expertise.
@JamesDunlap Oh? There are at least a couple of people on the site who do consulting, I believe.
But perhaps they are busy. Where did you ask?

@FaheemMitha Yes, indeed. It's a powerful tool that takes the mystery out of what something will look like when we send it to the mail-house and that has definite value.

@JamesDunlap Personally, I've historically found TeX rather hair-raising, as software goes.
But perhaps part of that is my inherent, instinctual, unexamined feeling that typesetting is easy, and shouldn't require so much effort.

@FaheemMitha I can't remember if I asked, but I spent a while searching and didn't find anything obvious.

3:58 PM
That feeling is probably wrong.
Also, I haven't really spent significant time studying it. Have spent a little time doing so recently, partly because of built-up technical debt, partly because I was desperate to do something that actually used some of my brain cells, I've discovered that it isn't actually that terrifying.

Tex does feel backward and limiting when compared to mature programming languages; however, I'm not aware of a better way to have fine grained control over printing.

But I doubt I'd have much success convincing others of that.

@JamesDunlap Didn't DB (German Rail) use pdftex for their timetables at one point?

@JamesDunlap I agree with that feeling. But programming languages don't do typesetting in real time, though.

@daleif Yes, I remember something along these lines!

4:01 PM
I read/heard somewhere that they use TeX in Indian railways, somewhere. I could be mistaken.

Also Patrick and Stephan do publishing with TeX.

@daleif I'm not familiar with German Rail but that would be interesting.

@JamesDunlap I suppose you've seen troubleshooting-tex.de ?

@FaheemMitha No, I have not.

@JamesDunlap Ok.

4:05 PM
For us it comes down to generating PDFs that print consistently print across thousands of devices. Another use case we have is printing over existing forms. So if you need to fill out 500 copies of a single form (example: courthouse) You'll want to do it automatically. However, these forms often aren't fillable PDFs. So we literally measure the printed form and use Tikz absolute positioning to print on top of the existing form.

I recall David Kastrup was trying to make a living with TeX consulting at one time. He is super smart. If you could get hold of him, you could ask him whether he is interested.

I did something similar to you for some students in either economics or political science. They needs some confidential reports made from some CSV data plus some images that were per report (not reused). In the end I did something in LaTeX + python (mainly because python was easy to install on their Macs). I'm not allowed to see the actual data. Works just fine once the template is made.

@JamesDunlap Yes, I do something similar when I need to fill in a PDF.
For a while, I was trying to use PDF filling software. But all of those are unreliable and bugridden.

@JamesDunlap I more or less do the same with various Word only forms at the University where I work.

TeX may be trying at time, but it's absolutely reliable, and very precise. But we all know that already.

4:08 PM
@FaheemMitha I was looking into using fillable PDFs for an exam. Worked fine until I noticed that the exam system where the students hand in their work filters PDF files and removes any form data.

@JamesDunlap For someone who works with TeX professionally, you don't have much activity on this site, though.
@daleif Oh. Does it filter what TeX writes on top?

@FaheemMitha I haven't seen much LaTeX activity from David in a long time. He's active on the auctex list though.

@FaheemMitha I'm really not supposed to be working with TeX because I'm not really a developer but we needed someone with an artistic touch to make the letters look nice.

@daleif Oh. Yes, he doesn't seem so TeX-active in recent years. I wonder what he is doing now.
@JamesDunlap I see.

@FaheemMitha No this were a fillable PDF generated via LaTeX+hyperref, you can fill it via Adobe Reader or Evince on Linux. You can save that data in the PDF and retrieve it very easy as form data. That data was filtered away.

4:11 PM
@daleif You can generate fillable PDFs via LaTeX?

@FaheemMitha it is part of hyperref. In our case all answers are just numbers (0-99), it was super easy to transform the existing code for the exam.

@FaheemMitha And I only asked questions when I got stuck. Many of the questions I needed answered were already answered by the community so I just kept searching and reading.

@daleif The fillable thing is part of hyperref?
@JamesDunlap That's very restrained of you.

@FaheemMitha see section 6 of the hyperref manual.

@FaheemMitha I know all too well the frustration of dealing with people who want a question answered but won't spend a few minutes searching.

4:14 PM
@daleif Ok. Thank you.
@JamesDunlap We all get sick of reading documentation sometimes.
And TeX can be quite trying (I said that already), especially if you are not familiar with it.

Honestly, I learned mostly l learned TeX in a 48 hour sleepless marathon when an emergency happened.

@JamesDunlap Impressive. I've been working with TeX (and Lua) relatively intensively since around mid-May. I doubt I could do much of anything in 48 hours, though.

@JamesDunlap I helped on a project earlier this year. A colleague published his "memoirs" (not a really memoir, more a retelling of the people he meet through his life). It has math in it, but the published is using InDesign and cannot really handle math.

Tex... Isn't what I would call intuitive... But then, we're talking about publishing formats - is anything in publishing intuitive?

Ended up with a custom setup in LuaLaTeX (to get the fonts right), converted all the text to markdown, all the math into images. Inline math with embedded information of where the baseline was suppose to be (and possibly some horizontal kerning).

4:17 PM
@JamesDunlap Dunno. If there is something better than TeX out there, it's hiding itself pretty well. And I can imagine things that are better than TeX, at least from a usage pov, but they don't exist. So...

I had my team go so far as to implement a simple web based IDE for executing TeX with our template code. imgur.com/PQI9riQ

@daleif Sounds like a lot of work.

Worked, but it was strange. Had to use external tools to get the real sizes of the images.
@FaheemMitha It was interesting. I did not know that InDesign actually knows javascript. So in their end they could run some code of theirs that god the baseline adjustment data from the PDF files back into InDesign. The book looks really good (even if it does not have an aligned right edge of the text)

@daleif Wow. Maybe you should be doing TeX consulting.

@FaheemMitha Well, it depends.

4:22 PM
@daleif BTW, how familiar are you with LuaTeX?

At one point we had published a book at an international publisher and used their template. We disagreed so much with it that next time we published with them, we just made our own template. They did not care.
@FaheemMitha Very little. I still see it as being under development and a lot of things are not always stable (unicode-math often comes up). Plus it has been soooo slow. I generally use pdflatex and that is what most of the people I support works with.

@FaheemMitha (and @JamesDunlap) -- There was a presentation at TUG 2015 about a similar high-volume, corporate-critical use: Joachim Schrod, DocCenter — TeXing 11 million documents a year; there is also a video of that presentation.

@daleif I see. I had the impression that LuaTeX was now reasonably stable. It's crossed the 1.0 milestone. And seems to be increasingly used.
It's working for me so far. Touch wood.
@barbarabeeton Someone should ask them for donations. :-)

@JamesDunlap what are the benefits to using TT? I've started using embeddeed perl (via mojolicious), though it needs a slight reconfiguration as its main markup char is % so not really good for LaTeX. I've been using ¡ instead.
top tip: if you want a warm dinner, remember to turn on the stove.

@daleif Personally I'm a Python person. Though Python and TeX don't really talk to each other.
Then again, neither do Perl and TeX.

4:35 PM
@FaheemMitha Almost all I do that are not in latex and friends are via Perl, just because I have the most experience with that language. I do try to use python more, though.
Once I have a templating system in place, I haven't had much issues using Perl to generate LaTeX documents.
For an up coming conference I have some perl scripts generating the program, abstract book, single abstracts etc. Finally got around to look at running stuff in parallel, so generating those single PDF abstracts now runs in parallel.

@daleif Templating as a style file?

@FaheemMitha Not really. The template in this case would be a mixture of Perl and LaTeX syntax. Such that for example <¡= $title ¡> in the template would be filled in by Perl and once Perl is done with it, it is now a LaTeX file. There are many similar template engines for python @daleif You couldn't do what you need with pure TeX? Coloring a Perl-LaTeX template in the editor, is not particularly nice though. Possibly with a splash of Lua. 4:42 PM @FaheemMitha 1000 times easier and faster this way. @daleif Yes, syntax highlighting tends to be quite fragile if you mix stuff. @daleif Ok. I don't need to learn yet another new language. @FaheemMitha It is quite interesting that web-mode for emacs can actually do that with the normal embedded perl syntax (it uses <%=$title %> etc) and can handle files that has, html, php, javascript and css in one single file.

@daleif Impressive. I'm not familiar with web-mode.
I was thinking about AUCTeX, for example.
Which goes off the rails quite easily.

@FaheemMitha it is quite cool
@FaheemMitha it is not too bad, it is mostly stray $ that confuses the coloring. I have a few places in the memoir code where I have to add a %$ or similar for the Emacs syntax highlighter.

@daleif It doesn't cope with TeX programming (even simple stuff) so well. AFAICT.
And there are other issues.

4:59 PM
@FaheemMitha example? and the other issues? (note I'm still using an older auctex, I have heard there might be issues with newer ones)

5:11 PM
@DavidCarlisle I haven't been working on dtx files lately. Is is me or didn't verbatim used to remove the % that starts lines?
Hmm, and I'm not even on TL19 on this PC.

5:25 PM
@daleif Example of TeX programming? I posted a complaint some time ago.
Can't find the question now. Assuming I did post it.
Two specific issues I've had with AUCTeX is that if you change the engine in the annotations, it doesn't pick up on it. I have to kill the Emacs server, which is annoying.
Also, it's prone to register the wrong master file in the annotations, and once the wrong file is there, I again need to kill the server.
I'm not aware of a way to make it reparse the file, but there may be one. I haven't investigated.

@FaheemMitha We used template toolkit because it was part of the original technology stack of our platform. It wouldn't necessarily be our first choice.
The point being that it's quite useful to have templating language for not only injecting your data, but handling logic and loops.

@daleif yes

Grrr my 4TB HDD is ruined.

@PauloCereda how did you manage that?

@DavidCarlisle I wish I was the one to blame. Bad sectors, I/O failure. Probably a bad series...

5:40 PM
@JamesDunlap You can use LuaTeX for such things.
The Lua is integrated with TeX, so it's quite efficient.

@AlanMunn I agree. Also English, but not as bad as German. (sorry for answering to a message from before my account was even created. I had to get this out there. This is so frustrating at times!)

@FaheemMitha LuaTex is essentially what we built. To be clear, this implementation was started back before Lua was popular.

@thymaro :)

@JamesDunlap Hmm.

@thymaro Yes, although I think that English scientific writing prefers clarity over style, perhaps because so much of it is written by non-native speakers these days. Much less true in the humanities though, (philosophy, literature especially).

5:46 PM
@JamesDunlap One nice thing about TeX is that it's quite automatable. I don't know if InDesign can do that.
@AlanMunn Is the subject of discussion the KOMA manual?

@FaheemMitha That's where it began, I think. I've never managed to use KOMA because I've always found the manual (at least in English) to be intolerable.

@AlanMunn I actually quite like the manual. It's very comprehensive.

@FaheemMitha For example, here is an example of the same letter template that dynamically restructures based on the data it's passed. imgur.com/fe6mIzs

If I have a complaint about KOMA, it is that not everything that I can imagine is possible.
But I have quite an affinity with things Germanic. At least, in some ways.

@FaheemMitha Many of command names are also unintuitive to me.

5:49 PM
@AlanMunn Such as?

@AlanMunn starting with \documentclass ?

@FaheemMitha disposition????

@AlanMunn I forget what that means, but it sounds funny.
@JamesDunlap With the Perl template?

@FaheemMitha The fact that you forget what it means supports my point. :)

@AlanMunn I don't think I've ever come across that. Whatever it is. But KOMA is a big project.
And I'm just a beginner.

5:51 PM
@AlanMunn True. Although I haven't analyzed it or have any statistics over it, I have a hunch that when English scientific literature seems convoluted and the text is hard to read because of that, it turns out to be bad science. I have tested a few lab methods and some of them were just not reproducible. The methods were quite simple, but the description sometimes incomplete or some other way cryptic (missing details or units or such). So, yeah, you might be just on point.
Ok gotta go back to my own convoluted text.

@DavidCarlisle I don't find that particularly unintutitive really. class is pretty transparently used here.

@FaheemMitha Yes. If you look at this example, you can see a bunch of conditional text create the body of the letter. imgur.com/tLS5qSn

@JamesDunlap You could just use TeX macros for most of that, I think.
Simple ones.
I believe TeX isn't so great at basic arithmetic, though.
And if you want to do something more complicated than that, you definitely need to use something else.

@JamesDunlap IMHO template engines are the best option so far. :)

@FaheemMitha I don't TeX macros around going to play nicely with data stored in variables defined by the templating language.
@PauloCereda Have a templating engine you care to recommend?

6:00 PM
@JamesDunlap You could define the TeX macros using the information from the templating language. But perhaps that's more overhead.

@JamesDunlap Perhaps. :) Which language do you use?

@FaheemMitha My thought exactly.

Anyway, Lua is probably the ticket for a lot of this kind of thing. For example, you could use it to read from config files, and insert into the TeX file.

@PauloCereda We use several but our server side code is in Perl.

@JamesDunlap cool! Let me see.

6:02 PM
@FaheemMitha you have to get the data into the document somehow. It can either be done, say by defining macros in the preamble, or say assigning them via a CSV, or it can be done include via a templating system. The latter is by far the fastest solution.

@FaheemMitha Lua is fine but it's basically doing the same thing as our template toolkit implementation.

@JamesDunlap Well, it's presumably a superset, but I guess you don't care about all of it.

@daleif well said.

@DavidCarlisle as in it used to remove % and now it does not?

@daleif no it did and it does (unless something broke)

6:04 PM
@JamesDunlap I think TT is the best approach for Perl right now. There are probably some projects in GitHub that might offer some alternatives. For Python, I can recommend Cheetah and for Java, Velocity is interesting (although there are others).

@DavidCarlisle hmm, I'll see what I changed in the preamble of this dtx file.

@PauloCereda Well, you've made me feel better as TT is exactly what we implemented.

@DavidCarlisle interesting, adding \usepackage[draft]{fixme} (before hyperref if it matters) makes verbatim show the start of lines %. Without fixme they disappear again
@PauloCereda What is so special about it compared to say embedded perl? (used by Mojo::Template)
@DavidCarlisle also appears with the latest TL19
@DavidCarlisle ohh, fixme loads the verbatim package, that might explain it.

6:25 PM
@daleif Oh I actually do not use TT or Perl, it was just a comment. :)

What'd be the best way to see what changes have recently been made to a package?

@vlg Change history in the docs? GitHub (if it's there).

@vlg depends on whether the package have a public repository and that you can see the history of that.

Something in the tikz or pgfplots one(s) exhibits unexpected behavior, given I haven't changed anything.

@vlg Also look at the package itself. Lots of us document changes in the package.
@vlg TikZ has a GitHub repo github.com/pgf-tikz/pgf

6:30 PM
Also ponderous- I'm using the 1.16, which is supposedly the stable version. the recommended one, so none of the new features or code should be used
@AlanMunn thanks
Seems to be github.com/pgf-tikz/pgf/commit/… - easily avoidable by reverting to pdflatex

6:56 PM
@DavidCarlisle At least I could use that as an excuse for not being of any use lately :P

7:15 PM
@egreg @DavidCarlisle Now that I'm adding crampedsubstack to mathtools, I might as well add smallarray, I had a link to this egreg answer in my TODO notes: tex.stackexchange.com/a/98692/3929, can it be improved or can it just be copied as is?

@daleif we have some interesting email re amsmath relatex to the recent amsmath issues here github.com/latex3/latex2e/issues I'll forward I'm not sure if anyof it applies also to mathtools
@daleif you are on holiday:-)
@vlg I think Henri said that fix has already been pushed to ctan so should be appearing in miktex/texlive soon if not already

7:32 PM
@DavidCarlisle in texlive is it already.

@DavidCarlisle yes, and as the message says I don't read my work mail while on holiday (yeah it replies correctly). I'll wait until next week then. The crampedsubstack may have fixed 149 unless you guys want to fix it.

7:50 PM
@UlrikeFischer Do you know an affected font which if (freely) available (and which does not require switching to Mac)?

@MarcelKrüger no I got only forwarded this one, but Bruno seems to have done quite extensive tests, perhaps there is another one. When he adds the issue in the tracker as announced I will ask.

8:48 PM
@daleif I see nothing worthy an intervention.

9:05 PM
@egreg I see it more as a missing supplement, especially for lin alg where the matrices may be too big.

@daleif Possibly

9:47 PM
@DavidCarlisle Anything outstanding for the dev release?

10:03 PM
@JosephWright don't think so, I just sent an email about git usage though... Also there was the issue here with @UlrikeFischer on how best to manage the input paths to avoid plain picking up latex-dev (I also need to update the graphics-plain miniltx at some point)

@DavidCarlisle OK, so I'll step the PR and build tomorrow

@JosephWright OK

2 hours later…
11:47 PM
hey with tikz, how do you make it do something last?
so like when newer things overlap older things, but you want the old thing in the foreground
i have a line that overlaps a node, but i need the node to be in front of the line
i can't just re-arrange the order of the code
because the lines depend on the nodes, etc
i just want the nodes drawn last