[OS X TeX] Fragile Commands [Was: how to convert .doc to .TEX?]

Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com
Wed Jan 19 18:58:00 EST 2005

Le 19 janv. 05, à 23:52, Herb Schulz a écrit :

> But the \emph{} command doesn't seem to be fragile. I think most of 
> these
> simple commands were fixed up. The \emph{} command as redefined by 
> pdfsync
> is fragile; and Jerome know that already.

I hadn't noticed pdfsync.sty does redefine \emph. For sure it makes it 
fragile. About whether \emph is already fragile in standard LaTeX 2e, 
I'm not sure; being at home with no copy of Lamport's LaTeX manual, I 
can't check.

Things also seem to change, with more and more commands becoming robust 
in successive LaTeX 2e releases. I remember that originally all \ref 
commands in a figure caption had to be \protect'ed (like in a figure 
caption referencing another figure), and at some point suddenly it 
ceased to be so.

In any case my original suggestions to Alain Schremmer were to either 
use \protect\emph, or \textit. The first one is certainly better with 
regard to LaTeX's philosophy (structural instead of presentational 
markup), but also more difficult to understand (and yielding less 
user-friendly sectioning menus in LaTeX-aware text editors). Errors due 
to lack of \protect'ion are among the most difficult ones to debug, as 
the error messages generally bear very little relation to what's 
actually happening.

Bruno Voisin

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