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tex


  2  definitions  found 
 
  From  Jargon  File  (4.2.3,  23  NOV  2000)  [jargon]: 
 
  TeX  /tekh/  n.  An  extremely  powerful  {macro}-based  text 
  formatter  written  by  Donald  E.  {Knuth},  very  popular  in  the 
  computer-science  community  (it  is  good  enough  to  have  displaced  Unix 
  {{troff}},  the  other  favored  formatter  even  at  many  Unix  installations). 
  TeX  fans  insist  on  the  correct  (guttural)  pronunciation,  and  the  correct 
  spelling  (all  caps,  squished  together,  with  the  E  depressed  below  the 
  baseline;  the  mixed-case  `TeX'  is  considered  an  acceptable  kluge  on 
  ASCII-only  devices).  Fans  like  to  proliferate  names  from  the  word  `TeX' 
  --  such  as  TeXnician  (TeX  user),  TeXhacker  (TeX  programmer),  TeXmaster 
  (competent  TeX  programmer),  TeXhax  and  TeXnique  See  also  {CrApTeX}. 
 
  Knuth  began  TeX  because  he  had  become  annoyed  at  the  declining 
  quality  of  the  typesetting  in  volumes  I-III  of  his  monumental  "Art  of 
  Computer  Programming"  (see  {Knuth},  also  {bible}).  In  a  manifestation 
  of  the  typical  hackish  urge  to  solve  the  problem  at  hand  once  and  for 
  all  he  began  to  design  his  own  typesetting  language.  He  thought  he 
  would  finish  it  on  his  sabbatical  in  1978;  he  was  wrong  by  only  about 
  8  years.  The  language  was  finally  frozen  around  1985,  but  volume  IV  of 
  "The  Art  of  Computer  Programming"  is  not  expected  to  appear  until  2002. 
  The  impact  and  influence  of  TeX's  design  has  been  such  that  nobody 
  minds  this  very  much  Many  grand  hackish  projects  have  started  as  a 
  bit  of  {toolsmith}ing  on  the  way  to  something  else;  Knuth's  diversion 
  was  simply  on  a  grander  scale  than  most 
 
  TeX  has  also  been  a  noteworthy  example  of  free  shared,  but 
  high-quality  software.  Knuth  offers  a  monetary  awards  to  anyone  who 
  found  and  reported  bugs  dating  from  before  the  1989  code  freeze;  as  the 
  years  wore  on  and  the  few  remaining  bugs  were  fixed  (and  new  ones  even 
  harder  to  find),  the  bribe  went  up  Though  well-written,  TeX  is  so  large 
  (and  so  full  of  cutting  edge  technique)  that  it  is  said  to  have  unearthed 
  at  least  one  bug  in  every  Pascal  system  it  has  been  compiled  with 
 
 
 
  From  The  Free  On-line  Dictionary  of  Computing  (13  Mar  01)  [foldoc]: 
 
  TeX 
 
    /tekh/  An  extremely  powerful  {macro}-based  text 
  formatter  written  by  {Donald  Knuth},  very  popular  in  academia, 
  especially  in  the  computer-science  community  (it  is  good 
  enough  to  have  displaced  {Unix}  {troff},  the  other  favoured 
  formatter  even  at  many  {Unix}  installations). 
 
  TeX  fans  insist  on  the  correct  (guttural)  pronunciation,  and 
  the  correct  spelling  (all  caps,  squished  together,  with  the  E 
  depressed  below  the  baseline;  the  mixed-case  TeX"  is 
  considered  an  acceptable  {kluge}  on  {ASCII}-only  devices). 
  Fans  like  to  proliferate  names  from  the  word  TeX"  -  such  as 
  TeXnician  (TeX  user),  TeXhacker  (TeX  programmer),  TeXmaster 
  (competent  TeX  programmer),  TeXhax  and  TeXnique 
 
  Knuth  began  TeX  because  he  had  become  annoyed  at  the  declining 
  quality  of  the  typesetting  in  volumes  I--III  of  his  monumental 
  "Art  of  Computer  Programming"  (see  {Knuth},  also  {bible}).  In 
  a  manifestation  of  the  typical  hackish  urge  to  solve  the 
  problem  at  hand  once  and  for  all  he  began  to  design  his  own 
  typesetting  language.  He  thought  he  would  finish  it  on  his 
  sabbatical  in  1978;  he  was  wrong  by  only  about  8  years.  The 
  language  was  finally  frozen  around  1985,  but  volume  IV  of  "The 
  Art  of  Computer  Programming"  has  yet  to  appear  as  of  mid-1997. 
  (However,  the  third  edition  of  volumes  I  and  II  have  come 
  out).  The  impact  and  influence  of  TeX's  design  has  been  such 
  that  nobody  minds  this  very  much  Many  grand  hackish  projects 
  have  started  as  a  bit  of  {toolsmith}ing  on  the  way  to 
  something  else;  Knuth's  diversion  was  simply  on  a  grander 
  scale  than  most 
 
  TeX  has  also  been  a  noteworthy  example  of  free  shared,  but 
  high-quality  software.  Knuth  offers  monetary  awards  to  people 
  who  find  and  report  a  bug  in  it:  for  each  bug  the  award  is 
  doubled.  (This  has  not  made  Knuth  poor,  however,  as  there 
  have  been  very  few  bugs  and  in  any  case  a  cheque  proving  that 
  the  owner  found  a  bug  in  TeX  is  rarely  cashed).  Though 
  well-written,  TeX  is  so  large  (and  so  full  of  cutting  edge 
  technique)  that  it  is  said  to  have  unearthed  at  least  one  bug 
  in  every  {Pascal}  system  it  has  been  compiled  with 
 
  Several  document  processing  systems  are  based  on  TeX,  notably 
  {LaTeX}  Lamport  TeX  -  incorporates  document  styles  for  books, 
  letters,  slides,  etc.,  {jadeTeX}  uses  TeX  as  a  backend  for 
  printing  from  {James'  DSSSL  Engine},  and  {Texinfo},  the  {GNU} 
  document  processing  system.  Numerous  extensions  to  TeX  exist, 
  among  them  {BibTeX}  for  bibliographies  (distributed  with 
  LaTeX),  {PDFTeX}  modifies  TeX  to  produce  {PDF}  and  {Omega} 
  extends  TeX  to  use  the  {Unicode}  character  set 
 
  See  also  {Comprehensive  TeX  Archive  Network}. 
 
  {(ftp://labrea.stanford.edu/tex/)} 
 
  E-mail:    (TeX  User's  group  Oregon,  USA). 
 
  (1997-11-20) 
 
 




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