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Re: groff supports Italian input documents now

From: Ingo Schwarze
Subject: Re: groff supports Italian input documents now
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 2021 16:18:17 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.12.2 (2019-09-21)

Hi Dave,

Dave Kemper wrote on Mon, Jul 05, 2021 at 08:36:56AM -0500:
> On 7/3/21, G. Branden Robinson <> wrote:

>> These are all fair points and I will chew on them, and would like to
>> solicit the views of others on this as well.

> I agree with Ingo's point that the document author is in the best
> position to know which language-specific macro package is required to
> format the document correctly.
> However, this argues against requiring the end user to either have a
> specific locale setting or need to supply specific command-line
> switches, and in favor of this information being encoded into the
> document itself.
> To that end, it seems we ought to be steering authors toward including
> appropriate .mso requests within their documents.  This would allow
> the output to be correct regardless of the end user's environment or
> command invocation.

This is likely a useful recommendation - except for manual pages,
of course, which should not use low-level roff(7) requests and where
some tools (for example mandoc) will deny .mso for security reasons.

However, even if the groff project decides to issue such advice,
users still need a way to specify the required language macro set
for existing documents that predate the recommendation and for
documents where the author decided against using .mso for whatever
reason, wasn't aware of the recommendation, or simply forgot
to use .mso.

I still consider it best practice to invite users, exactly like for
any other macro set, to specify -m if they want to use a language
macro set.  That seems more natural and less fragile than asking
them to abuse the LC_* environment variables which were designed
for a totally different, often conflicting purpose.


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