# [OS X TeX] box in forms

Herb Schulz herbs at wideopenwest.com
Sat Jan 15 20:21:36 EST 2005

```On 1/15/05 6:51 PM, "Alain Schremmer" <Schremmer.Alain at verizon.net> wrote:

> I tried it and I am overwhelmed. At the risk of appearing ungrateful,
> though, I think that, at least for the time being, I prefer the other
> solution because it does not depend on \newcommand which I am afraid of
> while the other solution is completely local and context-free.
>
> Still, I am going to have to learn newcommand sooner or later and I a
> putting this in my file of things to study.
>
> Grateful regards
> --schremmer
>

Howdy,

All \newcommand is doing is making it easy to write things in compact way;
i.e., it is giving a command name to a set of commands. If you'd rather not
use \newcommand then use

{\setlength{\fboxsep}{10pt}\framebox{TEXT}}

for the equivalent of \boxit and

{\setlength{\fboxsep}{10pt}\framebox{\phantom{TEXT}}}

for the equivalent of \pboxit where TEXT is the text to display (or an
equivalent empty box for that TEXT. That does seem terribly awkward to say
the least. By the way, the enclosing outer braces are important since they
make the dimension change of \fboxsep ``local'' to within the braces; it is
restored to its orginal value automatically when exiting the closing outer
brace.

The use of \newcommand is actually fairly simple:

\newcommand{\cmdname}[# of Arguments]{commands to be carried out with #n as
a symbol for each argument}

There is a variation with a second optional argument which tells \newcommand
that

i)the first argument is optional and
ii)contains the default value of the optional argument if none is given.

Nothing to be worried about! As a matter of fact it is definitely the way to
go since it allows you to change the definition if you decide to and it will
automatically change all the uses.

Good Luck,

Herb Schulz
(herbs at wideopenwest.com)

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