[tex-implementors] Re: [tex-live] LM as the default outline font?

Gavin McCullagh gavin at celt.dias.ie
Tue Mar 29 18:31:49 CEST 2005

Hi Philip,

On Tue, 29 Mar 2005, Philip TAYLOR wrote:

> >And if 0.100 is higher than 0.99, then 0.982 will  be higher, too.
> and if the Holy Father were a Protestant, then the entire Vatican
> staff would be out of a job!  But he isn't, any more than
> 0.100 is higher than 0.99, so what are we to gain by discussing
> counter-factuals ?

The point is simply one of convention.  It's impossible for software
authors to guess how many subversions they will need so rather than having
to pad the first version 0.00000001, they say 0.10 > 0.1 because 10 > 1.
Subsubversions are done with an extra full stop.  This full stop is not a
floating point, it's just a delimiter.

As an example of this, the man page of the unix ls command says:

       -v     sort by version 

this implements the above scheme:

  gavin at ravioli gavin> touch v0.99 v0.982
  gavin at ravioli gavin> ls -lv v0*
  -rw-rw-rw-  1 gavin gavin 0 2005-03-29 17:22 v0.99
  -rw-rw-rw-  1 gavin gavin 0 2005-03-29 17:22 v0.982

implying 0.99 < 0.982.  While of course everyone is in a position to break
conventions, it is not generally a good idea.

Knuth's numbering scheme is consistent with the above.  He just skips an
awful lot of possible version numbers.  Even LaTeX does this with its
sectioning commands.


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