4.4.2 TCX files: Character translations --------------------------------------- TCX (TeX character translation) files help TeX support direct input of 8-bit international characters if fonts containing those characters are being used. Specifically, they map an input (keyboard) character code to the internal TeX character code (a superset of ASCII). Of the various proposals for handling more than one input encoding, TCX files were chosen because they follow Knuth's original ideas for the use of the `xchr' and `xord' tables. He ventured that these would be changed in the WEB source in order to adjust the actual version to a given environment. It turns out, however, that recompiling the WEB sources is not as simple a task as Knuth predicted; therefore, TCX files, providing the possibility of changing of the conversion tables on on-the-fly, has been implemented instead. This approach limits the portability of TeX documents, as some implementations do not support it (or use a different method for input-internal reencoding). It may also be problematic to determine the encoding to use for a TeX document of unknown provenance; in the worst case, failure to do so correctly may result in subtle errors in the typeset output. This is entirely independent of the MLTeX extension (Note: MLTeX): whereas a TCX file defines how an input keyboard character is mapped to TeX's internal code, MLTeX defines substitutions for a non-existing character glyph in a font with a `\accent' construction made out of two separate character glyphs. TCX files involve no new primitives; it is not possible to specify that an input (keyboard) character maps to more than one character. Information on specifying TCX files: * The best way to specify a TCX file is to list it explicitly in the first line of the main document: %& -translate-file=TCXFILE * You can also specify a TCX file to be used on a particular TeX run with the command-line option `-translate-file=TCXFILE'. * TCX files are searched for along the `WEB2C' path. * Initial TeX (Note: Initial TeX.) ignores TCX files. The Web2c distribution comes with a number of TCX files. Two important ones are `il1-t1.tcx' and `il2-t1.tcx', which support ISO Latin 1 and ISO Latin 2, respectively, with Cork-encoded fonts (a.k.a. the LaTeX T1 encoding). TCX files for Czech, Polish, and Slovak are also provided. Syntax of TCX files: 1. Line-oriented. Blank lines are ignored. 2. Whitespace is ignored except as a separator. 3. Comments start with `%' and continue to the end of the line. 4. Otherwise, a line consists of one or two character codes, optionally followed by 0 or 1. The last number indicates whether DEST is considered printable. SRC [DEST [PRNT]] 5. Each character code may be specified in octal with a leading `0', hexadecimal with a leading `0x', or decimal otherwise. Values must be between 0 and 255, inclusive (decimal). 6. If the DEST code is not specified, it is taken to be the same as SRC. 7. If the same SRC code is specified more than once, it is the last definition that counts. Finally, here's what happens: when TeX sees an input character with code SRC, it 1) changes SRC to DEST; and 2) makes code the DEST "printable", i.e., printed as-is in diagnostics and the log file instead of in `^^' notation. By default, no characters are translated, and character codes between 32 and 126 inclusive (decimal) are printable. It is not possible to make these (or any) characters unprintable. Specifying translations for the printable ASCII characters (codes 32-127) will yield unpredictable results. Additionally you shouldn't make the following characters printable: `^^I' (TAB), `^^J' (line feed), `^^M' (carriage return), and `^^?' (delete), since TeX uses them in various ways. Thus, the idea is to specify the input (keyboard) character code for SRC, and the output (font) character code for DEST. By default, only the printable ASCII characters are considered printable by TeX. If you specify the `-8bit' option, all characters are considered printable by default. If you specify both the `-8bit' option and a TCX file, then the TCX can set specific characters to be non-printable. Both the active TCX encoding and whether characters are printable are saved in the dump files (like `tex.fmt'). So by giving these options in combination with `-ini' you set the defaults seen by anyone who uses the resulting dump file. When loading a dump, if the `-8bit' option was given, then all characters become printable by default. When loading a dump, if a TCX file was specified, then the TCX data from the dump is ignored and the data from the file used instead.
Dirfile and infopages generated Sat Dec 3 02:07:54 2005