Some TeX Developments

Programming LaTeX3: Introduction

Development of LaTeX3 has attracted interest from other TeX programmers for a while. One of the big barriers to new entrants is that programming LaTeX3 is distinct from programming LaTeX2e or plain TeX. So what is needed is a ‘Programming LaTeX3’ guide. The problem is getting one written: these things take time, and what to write is also something of a challenge.

To make a start on tackling this, I thought it would be useful to write a series of short blog posts, taking one area of LaTeX3 at a time and looking at it from the point of view of beginner in programming LaTeX3. The idea is that by keeping things short I can divide the problem into manageable chunks (both for readers and for me), and get feedback on each part before taking on the next one. If I make decent progress, I’ll then have some material to edit into something like an article for TUGBoat.

Now, to do a reasonable job I will have to cover some things I’ve looked at before: sorry if it turns out to be repetitive in places. I’m planning to start by looking at how you can actually start programming LaTeX3 today, covering the idea of ‘LaTeX3 in 2e’, for example. Then it will be on to the basics of the language, before we even get to creating any macros. Ideas for topics to cover are very welcome!