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Re: [Groff] tabs in non-literal context

From: Ingo Schwarze
Subject: Re: [Groff] tabs in non-literal context
Date: Sat, 15 Feb 2014 11:27:11 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

Hi Werner,

Werner LEMBERG wrote on Fri, Feb 14, 2014 at 06:54:42PM +0100:
> Ingo Schwarze wrote:
>> since a very long time [1], the mandoc(1) utility throws a warning
>> if an input file contains a literal tab character ('\t', ASCII 0x09)
>> outside literal context, where literal context is defined as
>>  - .Bd -literal    or
>>  - .Bd -unfilled   or
>>  - .Dl             when using -mdoc macros  or
>>  - .nf             when using -man macros

> I like that :-)
[ ... detailed explanation snipped ... ]

Thank you for your insightful reply.
What you explain makes a lot of sense to me, so i will not remove
the warning from mandoc(1).
Instead, when i find the time, i will check that the warning
is really thrown in the right cases, that is, when a literal tab
character appears in input text that will be filled - because
then, as you explain, it may be unclear which output line the
tab will end up on, so it might happen that the tabbing does not
work as intended.

Besides, i think it makes sense to avoid the impression that this
has anything to do with literal vs. non-literal mode (which would
be related to the choice of fonts) as opposed to filling vs.
non-filling mode, which appears to be the real issue.

On first sight, a few improvements of details are possible
in the mandoc(1) code.

Thank you,

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