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Re: texinfo: non-breakable space

From: Stepan Kasal
Subject: Re: texinfo: non-breakable space
Date: Fri, 11 Oct 2002 08:04:53 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/


On Thu, Oct 10, 2002 at 05:04:32PM -0400, Karl Berry wrote:
>     texinfo falls into the same
>     cathegory as Microsoft Word.  
> Well, I think that's a bit of an overstatement :).

it surely is.  I wanted to wake people up.
I apologize if it offended someone.

> I know you're right in principle, although in practice @w{ } and
> a true tie are usually indistinguishable.

I cannot aggree.  If the text is not \raggedright, the difference
is perfectly visible on every line which is stretched out.

When I use it like this:

        ... marked with an address@hidden }(@samp{*}).

you are probably right that the difference is undistiguisable.

But for normal things, like

        ... is held in hall~B.  ... the proof of Theorem~9.

the differece is so huge, that I'd take care to insert only those
which appear to be necessary (during the final phase of preparation
of the copy for printers).  And that practice is very inconvenient
and somewhat fragile.

If someone used texinfo for Czech language, that would be crucial.
We have words (prepositions) formed by one consonant and the tie is
required not only by the typographical rules but also by the gramatic
rules.  Since these are quite frequent, we even have a program to
add ~ automatically to TeX texts and Czech version of MS Word adds
ties as you write.

So this feature would be a must if texinfo were used to produce printed
books in Czech.  That explains why I was so irritated by the bug so
that I produced the overstatement :-)

> Anyway, I'll go ahead and implement an @tie{} command.

Thank you very much.  From the perspective of usability with Czech
language, something shorter would be more convenient.
Knuth's active tilde really comes very handy.

For example, wouldn't it be possible to have a switch at the top
which would make ``~'' an active character (in TeX terminology) which
would expand to @tie{}?

Thanks a lot,
        Stepan Kasal

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