On Thu, Mar 03, 2005 at 08:19:24AM -0700, Victor Mote wrote:
> Jeremias Maerki wrote:
> > While looking for material on page breaking I found several 
> > references to this document:
> > 
> > http://wwwlib.umi.com/dissertations/fullcit/8124134
> > 
> > Does anyone know if it's worth ordering and waiting for it? 
> > The unfortunate thing is that they don't seem to have a PDF 
> > version that I could download immediately for a reasonable fee.
> Wow. This looks like it is very valuable. I have ordered it for my own use,
> and I'll be glad to give you a "book review" when it arrives to help you
> decide whether it is worthwhile for you or not.

I do not know it. It sounds like I should buy it as well.
> Note that Stanford is Knuth's school, the date year is the same as that of
> Chapter 3 of Knuth's Digital Typography, and that the author is the
> co-author of that article. It may be possible to infer the same information
> from looking at the TeX source code. Also, another source of similar
> information would be Volume I of Knuth's "Computers and Typesetting", aka
> "The TeXbook". It is essentially a commentary on TeX, by Knuth. Chapter 15
> is entitled "How TeX Makes Lines into Pages".

Note that The TeXbook is TeX's user guide. Yes, Knuth's users are
quite advanced. It was my first book in the direction of computers,
and one of the most inspirational I have read.

The TeX program is described in 'TeX The Program'. That text is weaved
into the program code according to Knuth's literate programming
system. It can be freely extracted from the program code. A TeX
distribution like TeXLive contains the tools to do this. I intend to
do so soon. If you want to do it yourself, TeXLive is available from
the TUG website, www.tug.org. The TeX source code itself is available
from the CTAN repository, but I fear that you have to do some work to
set up all the tools. It is up to yourself to decide whether knowing
TeX's implementation is useful. It is a best-fit algorithm. There is
no look-ahead. For example, TeX is not able to balance two facing
pages (or two columns on a page, which for TeX is the same). I guess
that a dissertation like that cited above contains much more
information than implemented in TeX.

Regards, Simon

Simon Pepping
home page: http://www.leverkruid.nl

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