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[Axiom-developer] Re: article "standard" header/footer

From: root
Subject: [Axiom-developer] Re: article "standard" header/footer
Date: Tue, 29 Nov 2005 20:12:52 -0500

> > Each file I make into a "literate program" has a "head" and a "tail"
> > that contains essentially the same code for the same reasons. The only
> > major deviation is that I will occasionally include the "axiom.sty" file
> > in the literate document if it is meant to be stand-alone and the user
> > is unlikely to have it.
> Sorry, but I cannot completely agree here. I would NEVER include 
> axiom.sty into the document. It would be duplication of code and hard to 
> maintain.

Actually there are occasions that I include axiom.sty in documents.
Since everything I write these days starts life as a literate program
(even the stuff I do for work) I find that I'm sending other non-axiom
people literate programs. Without axiom.sty they run into the same
problem I had with ALLPROSE. (remember that I spent a fair amount of
time googling for the .sty files you didn't include). 

So what I do is include the axiom.sty file as a dependent clause in
the Makefile and it gets automatically extracted when the person
tries to build the document. Turns out to be quite convenient. I agree
about the long-term maintenance issue but that has nothing to do with
standalone documents.

I hate getting a document that requires .sty files I can't find.
You point out that people COULD include them in the zip file but
often they just assume everyone has them which is not true.

This is NOT an issue for axiom documents in an axiom system.

As to the maintanence issue Axiom is a large enough project that
maintaining a special .sty file for the project is perfectly reasonable.
Organizations like AMS, the ACM, and even CMU, my university, maintain
their own .sty files for papers and thesis work. Of course, we're
going to have to make the src/doc/axiom.sty.pamphlet file 
have real documentation.

Developers of axiom should use the axiom.sty to get a common, hopefully
agreed-upon style when there is a command that we use already. This 
does NOT mean that we have to swallow all other .sty files (like I 
did with noweb) but there are good reasons to do this if the .sty
file is going to be fundamental and we have things we want to change.
I have long-term ideas about literate programming that go beyond what
noweb provides and expect to have to rewrite the noweb commands to be
more baroque.


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