[OS X TeX] LinkBack/LaTeX on Mac OS X Feedback

Maarten Sneep maarten.sneep at xs4all.nl
Tue Feb 6 15:20:21 EST 2007

On Feb 6, 2007, at 18:34, King Chung Huang wrote:

> I'm the author of the Keynote LinkBack Plugin. I'm posting here  
> because a very large number of the plugin's users appear to use it  
> in conjunction with LinkBack aware LaTeX applications, and a good  
> portion of them also appear to be in educational institutions. One  
> of my many hats is as a member of the steering committee of the  
> MacLearning group. We have an annual meeting to provide feedback  
> directly to the engineers, product marketers, and others behind  
> Apple's products.

Thanks for the plugin, not I can finally upgrade iWork.

> I am in the process of preparing my requests for this year's agenda  
> items. I am interested in finding out if the Mac LaTeX users here  
> would be interested in seeing Apple doing something with LaTeX in  
> Mac OS X, or would you rather Apple leave it alone and defer to the  
> current community-based efforts? The "something" could mean  
> anything from simply including LaTeX in Mac OS X, to integration  
> with the text system. If there is interest in some sort of activity  
> from Apple, I will make a request to talk about this on this year's  
> agenda. And, if it makes it onto the agenda, I will post back with  
> questions on this list to get more specific information to present  
> to Apple.

I believe there were contacts before between the TUG and Apple on  
possibly including a TeX distribution in Mac OS X. However the size  
requirements (about 20 MB, iirc) were such that I think we're better  
off doing it ourself (using TeX Live as a basis). Having Apple  
include TeX would put us in the same situation as Perl/Python/Ruby:  
nice that it is there as a standard, but serious user will always  
want to upgrade (while you're at it, could you ask about putting  
these wider open source efforts not in /System/Library but in / 
Library, so that upgrading those somponents becomes easier).

If they are no longer tied to the 20 MB, then a full TeX Live would  
be the way forward, although feedback to the developers regarding  
changes would be needed (local trees, path names, etc).

Other items that may or may not be useful to you:

I've submitted similar feedback through the folks at macresearch.org,  
so some of these items may be familiar.

- Include the full gcc (including fortran, gcj, …) in the developer  
- make it easier to upgrade open source components
- (an old one from Gerben): add .tar.bz2 as one of the underlying  
packaging methods for Installer.app for security reasons.
- Support community efforts that add useful functionality and added  
value (Hint: LinkBack officially in iWork).
- Standards support: ODF at the framework level
- A system wide support tree for XML support files.


Maarten Sneep

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