Feeling uncomfortable with designation `public'

Joachim Schrod TWG-TDS@SHSU.edu
Tue, 3 Oct 1995 19:02:57 +0100 (MEZ)

Pierre wrote:
> My point is that I DON'T want a personal supplier directory, and
> most of the contributors of fonts into the public domain
> probably don't care either.  I saw one message ( I think from
> a battle-weary Karl Berry) that suggested we were resigned
> to dropping "public".  I still think it does better as
> a general location for public domain fonts (and free
> fonts that don't otherwise have a home) than a whole proliferation
> of rather pseudish supplier names.

OK, obviously I don't understand your viewpoint. Let's come back to
the current situation: Already, in public/ are fonts that are _not_
public domain, but are freely distributable (e.g., public/pandora/).
Other freely distributable fonts are placed outside of public/ due to
the request of their supplier (e.g., ams/) or because that supplier
has also non-free fonts (e.g., adobe/).

So -- I don't understand your aim. Do you want to place in public/
*only* PD fonts? Two points come up: (1) Where is Pandora placed then?
(2) Joerg might simply put a copyright (e.g., the GPL) on the DC
fonts. Then we must move them somewhere else, as they are not PD any

Or -- is your viewpoint the same as mine?

 o  public/ is the tree for all freely distributable fonts where
     -- the supplier didn't request an own directory, and
     -- the supplier didn't make _so_ many fonts that we want to
	identify him or her as their source.
 o  Suppliers or authors who fall under these two exceptions get an
    own tree.

As explained above, I think that's the situation we have right now
already; it's not a new proposal. 

I would like to see a bit pragmatism here and fix the description in
a style like above (feel like carrying owls to Athen when I, as a
German, preach pragmatism to Americans ;-).


On the other topic, of duplicate file names:

> I have yet to be convinced that it is a good idea to fill a TDS
> compliant *archive* with files having duplicate names.

If you substitute `archive' with `distribution' or `installation', I
fully agree with you.

I don't think it's a good thing to create a TDS *archive* in the
first place. TDS is for distributions and installations, not for
archives. _Archives_ have by definition old files, and one cannot
circumvent the problem of duplicate file names there.

> If individual
> installations wish to encumber themselves with that problem that
> is another matter.  A more elaborate texmf.cnf can handle it if
> it has to, and I suppose there must be techniques on other systems.

Yes, configuration files or environment variables.

I cannot see our disagreement in this point: I agree with you that it
is not a situation one shall strive for. But I do also see that this
situation will happen, and that folks will come to the TDS group and
will ask for resolvement of that question. (`will come'? They came
already... :-) 

So we should note in the document that such a situation may happen,
though one should try to avoid it. And that the situation -- if they
happen -- may be handled by appropriate methods, as you mentioned


Joachim Schrod			Email: schrod@iti.informatik.th-darmstadt.de
Computer Science Department
Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany