[sword-devel] LaTeX filter set

Peter von Kaehne refdoc at gmx.net
Sat Mar 21 08:51:39 MST 2015

Dear All,

As of today the engine has at svn HEAD a complete new LaTeX filter set. 

I am sure there are still some (major?) bugs inside, but I am ironing
them out as I go along. Anything you see, please tell.

What is missing is still a class file which needs to offer some simple
default definitions for the LaTeX commands I am using. 

I am also still working on the diatheke to make it produce better output
- it ignores at this moment still too many headings etc.

What can the LaTeX filters be used for?

1) Current frontends which offer scripture parts as export (e.g. Xiphos)
could be altered to offer LaTeX as an additional option

2) diatheke can be used to create LaTeX documents for typesetting
scripture portions. Copyrights and licenses obviously apply if you want
to distribute e.g PDF documents produced this way.

3) ultimately I hope to create a F/LOSS typesetting engine for Bibles. 

InDesign is currently the main stay for most Bible publishers, but I
think what I have created has some potential to compete with this (ha!
no false modesty here) - at least for those who can not afford expensive

SIL has published a set of LaTeX macros which move from USFM to a PDF,
but I have found them unwieldy and difficult to employ. I hope that what
I have here has the potential to be more flexible and better. 

Flexible and better - the SIL macro set is a single "blob" which goes
from USFM to PDF with scarcely a place to intervene. This here has
multiple places to intervene and allows new and interesting ways of
combining things e.g parallel Bibles should be easily created, or texts
with a huge apparatus. As the start is our highly structured and
relatively well defined OSIS, not USFM, debugging should be solely
concerned with presentational bugs and not USFM bugs (which is very hard
to debug beyond a certain level). The SIL "blob" needs debugging at
multiple levels at the same time. 

The LaTeX produced is highly semantic, i.e. I follow the lead of the
xhtml filters, allowing me to put all presentation into the classfiles
(for those who are used to CSS - similar kind of thing for LaTeX) where
it will be accessible to LaTeX users and not require re-compiling of the
engine to achieve a better output.

I hope to finish the classfile and diatheke  in the next couple of

This is my first major work on the engine, so I ask for patience and
forgiveness in advance if things are not up to scratch.


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