I'm happy to announce that the following paper has been accepted at TUG
2020, to be held (hopefully) this July in Rochester, USA.
Experimenting with Typesetting Algorithms, Interactively, and in Real-Time
In general, typesetting experimentation is not a very practical thing to
do. WYSIWYG typesetting systems are very reactive but do not offer
highly configurable algorithms, and TeX, with its separate development /
compilation / visualization phases, is not as interactive as its WYSIWYG
competitors. Being able to experiment with typesetting algorithms
interactively and in real-time is nevertheless desirable, for instance
for demonstration purposes, or for rapid prototyping, and debugging new
We present ETAP (Experimental Typesetting Algorithms Platform), a tool
written to ease the typesetting experimentation process. ETAP currently
provides several paragraph justification algorithms, all with many
configuration options such as kerning, ligatures, flexible spaces,
sloppiness, hyphenation, etc. The resulting paragraph is displayed with
many visual hints as well, such as paragraph, character, and line boxes,
baselines, over/underfullness hints, etc. All those parameters, along
with the desired paragraph width, are adjustable interactively through a
GUI, and the resulting paragraph is displayed and updated in real-time.
ETAP can also be used without the GUI, as a scriptable application. In
particular, it is able to generate all sorts of statistical reports or
charts on the behavior of the various algorithms, for instance, the
number of over/underfull boxes per paragraph width, the average
compression or stretch ratio per line, whatever else you want. This
allows you to quickly demonstrate or evaluate the comparative behavior
or merits of the provided algorithms, or whichever you may want to add
to the pool.
Resistance is futile. You will be jazzimilated.
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