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6:00 AM
Curious question: In which state is xgalley currently?
 
6:18 AM
@Skillmon Same as it has been for a long time, although with Frank having taken the at least some of the \par stuff into the kernel, it might need a bit of a tuneup
@Skillmon We are looking at using attributes for colour in LuaTeX generally, which would remove one need for l3galley at least with that engine
@Skillmon Bruno did say he had an idea about how to make it work 'safely' with existing docs, but he got busy with other things
@Skillmon With tagging as the current priority, it's not likely to change in the near future
 
6:38 AM
@JosephWright so in conclusion, nothing I should currently use for production code :)
@JosephWright thank you for the quick summary
 
@Skillmon Indeed
 
 
3 hours later…
9:45 AM
Eight million users is impressive (though of course I wonder how many are 'active') - as I've said there, I think one can conservatively say LaTeX has at least ten times as many users
No pressure on the team ...
@DavidCarlisle, @UlrikeFischer, @egreg, @MarcelKrüger, @PhelypeOleinik ^^^
@PauloCereda Enjoying working with all that responsibility? ;)
 
@JosephWright yes 400k daily active is possibly the more realistic number but that's still a lot of people
 
@DavidCarlisle Yes, but as not everyone will be on every day, I guess one could argue easily a million active users (you'd of course need the server logs to really know)
@DavidCarlisle Correlates reasonably with page views on TeX-sx - same order of magnitude
 
yo'
@JosephWright I love your pessimism that only 10% of LaTeX users use Overleaf ;)
 
@yo' :)
 
@yo' Room for growth! You can reach 80 million users :-D
 
yo'
9:55 AM
@StefanKottwitz well, in some sense that's a matter of time. It's the MAU that's more significant, but we're growing maybe even faster there...
 
@yo' There's a long standing question of how many LaTeX users there are in the world
 
10:32 AM
@JosephWright Thumbs up for the new error reporting/locating!
Well, that should have been @yo ;-)
 
@DavidCarlisle for a start it's 50K more than the entire population of my country :p
 
@Plergux and I trust they all use latex?
 
@DavidCarlisle well, obviously!
 
10:59 AM
> double slashes have a special meaning in kpse, that they search
recursively all directories below the given one.
That has been like this since the dawn of humans ;-)
notice the double slashes at the right edge of the image :)
@yo' & @PauloCereda Thanks a lot for improving the error indicator!
 
11:29 AM
@samcarter_looks_forward_TUG'21 sadly I will never get to see this improvement.
 
@DavidCarlisle we can teach you how to make errors - will be a brand new experience for you!
 
11:47 AM
@samcarter_looks_forward_TUG'21 overleaf should just detect "teh" as a critical error.
4
 
A general question: I once heard that you shouldn't write dissertations or the like in online editors. Why shouldn't you do that? Is that because the text can theoretically be uploaded to the servers? Would that really be a problem?
 
@Schubladenzieher don't see any problem with it (although when I wrote my thesis there was no web so...) I an sure there are millions of people with thesis and dissertations in Overleaf (scroll up a few lines here to see discussion of overleaf numbers) Of course if your paper is using some commercialy private data that you signed could not be moved outside your firewall then that is a constraint you have to follow.
@Schubladenzieher if I were writing a document now, I'd probably use a local tex and local editor (as that's what I am used to) but I would keep a continuous backup of the docuument in git on github so all the text would end up on an external server anyway.
 
@Schubladenzieher Some universities require you not to share your dissertation with any third parties before submission. In that case, the online editor can be seen as a third party. But the bigger issue is that if you only write online, there is the risk that the online service has issues when you have to submit the dissertation and you suddenly can't access your document. (Of course, you should have backups anyway, but people tend to forget that)
 
12:07 PM
Thank you for your answers @DavidCarlisle @MarcelKrüger! @MarcelKrüger yes, I already thought that it could be because of that. I'm not ready to start a dissertation yet, but I have actually received advice from some people that it is better to write any work in a local editor.
 
@JosephWright ooh let's break stuff
@samcarter_looks_forward_TUG'21 <3
 
@Schubladenzieher Anyway, in my very personal opinion, to write anything long or frequently in LaTeX, the time spent to learn a real powerful editor is always well spent.
 
12:24 PM
@Schubladenzieher just to make sure you understand @Rmano correctly, he means you should learn VIM (and never trust anyone telling you that you should learn Emacs)
 
@Rmano I agree, I'm just bad it took me 10 years of using Emacs before I started writing macros in Emacs. Could have saved so much time.
@Skillmon I don't know if VS code is the right tool for modern users, it seems to have a lot of traction and and do some really awesome stuff.
 
@Skillmon Right, learn vim and then be evil, maybe even doomed :D
 
@TeXnician oh no
 
12:59 PM
@daleif but does it run in my terminal? :)
 
1:34 PM
@Skillmon not sure, but emacs does
 
@daleif % alias emacs=vim; vim, you're right, it opens in my terminal. And it looks fabulous!
 
@Skillmon @PauloCereda I have finally found out how to quit vi
 
@DavidCarlisle bantham noooo
 
@DavidCarlisle wait, do I understand correctly that you have to break your fingers twice, just to open a file?
 
1:59 PM
@daleif could you add to memoir \AddToHook{package/after/hyperref}{\RequirePackage{memhfixc}} so that at some time I can remove the code from hyperref?
 
2:31 PM
@PauloCereda How was it, \AddToHook{para/end}{ And then the ducks arrived.}?
 
@mickep Yes. :)
 
Wouldn't an ordinary TeX editor be enough for me or what reason would speak for a switch to vim @Rmano @Skillmon? As a pharmacy student, I will probably hardly meet any fellow students or lecturer who works with TeX anyway...
 
@Schubladenzieher they were getting at me mostly (I use emacs) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Editor_war Just because they have been wrong for 30 years doesn't mean that you should expect them to stop being wrong now:-)
 
@DavidCarlisle oi
 
 
2 hours later…
4:33 PM
@UlrikeFischer I'll see if I can remember to add it to the list.
 
@Skillmon -- I was going to make the observation that "teh" is a reliable characteristic, but you got there first. (I guess I will just have to find a way to start earlier. The rotation of the earth is counterproductive in this regard.)
 
4:49 PM
@Schubladenzieher -- It used to be "BC" (before computers) that a PhD dissertation must address an original problem, and provide a unique (or new) solution. More than one PhD candidate was shot down and had to start over when someone else published first. I don't know what the requirements are now in this regard, but working in a potentially non-limited environment makes "escape" much easier.
 
 
2 hours later…
6:23 PM
I've just launched the kickstarted for my long-delayed LaTeX book at kickstarter.com/projects/preppylion/… This is as mcuh a reality check as anything else. If there aren't at least a couple dozen people interested in the book, I'll probably just drop the project.
 
7:00 PM
@barbarabeeton my bad for being in central Europe :)
 
@Skillmon -- Ah, I've gotten used to it. I still have a three hour lead over people in California.
 
@barbarabeeton ooh California dreaming
 
@Schubladenzieher Well, the part about the warning not to learn Emacs was meant absolutely seriously, at least if you want to keep your knuckles unharmed -- Emacs breaks fingers. But apart from that it was merely a joke. Everyone should pick the individually fitting editor. VIM is unintuitive at first and has a very steep learning curve, to me it's a productivity burst (or more: everything else is slowing me down). But your mileage may vary :)
@PauloCereda Californication?
 
@Skillmon ooh Dani California
 
@PauloCereda in the Hotel of California?
 
7:06 PM
@Skillmon going to California :)
 
@MarcelKrüger That would also mean that you always have to save your dissertation or thesis locally on your hard drive or on a USB stick, right? How do you do that when you want to synchronize your dissertation between different devices (e.g. when using several computers)? The old-fashioned way with the USB stick?
 
@Skillmon -- Why are one's knuckles in danger? (I've been using emacs for over 40 years, and my knuckles are still in better condition than other parts of my anatomy.) If forced to use Word, for example, there's real reason to worry about my sanity; much more a reason for concern than barked knuckles.
 
@Schubladenzieher Why not use Dropbox or its equivalents? Or if you keep a copy on a private GitHub repo you can just check out the updated copy on any machine you're working on.
 
@barbarabeeton Well, in order to type a sentence in a new file and save that file I have to hit Ctrl like 50 times in Emacs, together with absolutely arcane combinations :P
 
7:09 PM
@barbarabeeton Yes, punching your computer takes its toll on knuckles I hear.
 
@barbarabeeton (in case you didn't know: I'm never serious when writing anything about Emacs)
@barbarabeeton @PauloCereda's comic summarizes this quite well.
 
@AlanMunn Well, that would theoretically mean sharing your dissertation with a third party, or am I wrong?
 
@Skillmon <3
 
@AlanMunn -- The only time I've really been injured by a computer was when I dropped a Macbook on my toe. Took nearly a year for the nail to recover (and it still hasn't, really.)
 
@Schubladenzieher I guess it depends on your definition of 'share'. If you want you could set up your own cloud server, but for most people that's overkill.
 
7:12 PM
@PauloCereda yay, carrots!
 
@Skillmon Yay!
 
@Schubladenzieher My university provides cloud space that meets its security requirements for research and student data; maybe yours does too. It's third party in the sense that its run by Microsoft, not the university, but it clearly doesn't count as third party with respect to data confidentiality requirements.
 
@PauloCereda here, I found one for you: <3
 
@Skillmon -- Hmmm. Never had that problem; I guess I'm not a real power user. (But I do occasionally get a cramp in my arthritic thumb when eating odd-shaped slippery things with hashi.)
 
@Skillmon Thanks mr. rabbit! /duck hug
 
7:16 PM
@PauloCereda /rabbit nibble Oh, wait, that's nothing to eat! /rabbit hug
 
@AlanMunn Yeah, I think I actually have to ask my university about that. Thanks for your hint!
@Skillmon Well, I just hope that working with TeX is worth it at all. To be frank I don't like WYSIWYG editors at all, but to this day I don't know a single student or lecturer from the pharmacy faculty who even works with TeX. I also hope that the supervisor doesn't mind if I write the dissertation with TeX.
 
7:32 PM
@Schubladenzieher The degree to which your faculty advisor will mind will depend a lot on how they like to review work. If their idea of commenting on your chapters is to use track changes in Word, and make actual corrections to the text, then they will mind a lot. If they're happy with marking up/commenting PDFs then they probably won't care.
 
@Schubladenzieher when it's a dissertation it typically must match some regulations (foremost the cover formatting is more or less fixed), but else you should be free to decide what you use for your own dissertation. But it might be a good idea asking your supervisor beforehand.
@Schubladenzieher and else what @AlanMunn says.
 
@Schubladenzieher The big advantages of TeX for all academic work come from automatic numbering of things and bibliography/citation generation, and overall an easy to achieve high level of formatting consistency. Other advantages are more field dependent: any math heavy field will benefit, as do certain particular other areas (as in my case, linguistics).
 
To be honest, I couldn't imagine working with a WYSIWDG editor. Of course, as a student you should be able to work with such editors, but I didn't like the way such editors are set up since my school days :D
 
@Schubladenzieher quite understandable.
 
7:48 PM
But does the supervisor really have any influence on which editor you should work with? Or does it just boil down to his not accepting you as a PhD student?
 
@Schubladenzieher -- Not pharmacy, but here's a TUGboat article by an anaesthesiologist who uses TeX to record notes in the operating room: tug.org/TUGboat/tb19-3/tb60nick.pdf
 
@Schubladenzieher In principle, no. In practice, it really depends. You want to have a good working relationship with your supervisor, and that sometimes means accommodating to their way of working. Especially if your PhD position is paid by them, they're more than your supervisor, they're also your boss.
 
@Schubladenzieher As Alan said, it depends on the supervisor's preferred way of working. When I did my undergrad and even my first master's in the 00s, everything was submitted on paper. Ten years later when I got an MFA, everything was submitted electronically and people got really grumpy if anything other than a Word file was submitted.
@Schubladenzieher The editorial tools surrounding Word are, I have to admit, really quite good. Using them well requires a bit of learning investment (one of my advisors commented that I had an entire previous draft inadvertently stashed in track changes), but once you get past them, there's a lot to commend them. It's much easier than some of the back and forth I went through with Serif editorial work back in the 90s,
 
8:03 PM
@Schubladenzieher If you are co-writing articles with your advisor, then they get to decide, for example. But even when I work with people using LaTeX we often draft things using Google docs first and then move to LaTeX later. It depends a lot on the kind of content you're producing too.
 
8:31 PM
@AlanMunn Well at this point at the latest I will have to do without a TeX editor. As already mentioned, I don't know any supervisor from the pharmacy faculty who works with a TeX editor... this will be really fun :(
 
8:43 PM
@Schubladenzieher I think that we overestimate the time writing vs the time thinking/actually doing the research. But remember that faculty are generally much busier than you and so learning new things isn't so much about "I won't/can't" but "I don't have time".
 
9:40 PM
@AlanMunn You have a point there.
 
@Schubladenzieher But as I said earlier, don't assume things about advisors: ask. I don't care what my students use to write their thesis with, although most will use LaTeX, and many will use Overleaf. That's fine with me, but if they want to use Word, that's fine too. I comment only on PDFs using my iPad so that I can scribble or type comments, which suits me just fine.
 

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