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Re: [AUCTeX-devel] amsrefs support in reftex

From: Marcin Borkowski
Subject: Re: [AUCTeX-devel] amsrefs support in reftex
Date: Fri, 16 Oct 2015 12:40:19 +0200

On 2015-10-16, at 12:16, Tassilo Horn <address@hidden> wrote:

> Marcin Borkowski <address@hidden> writes:
>>> Uh, that sounds quite complicated to integrate into RefTeX.
>>> Basically, you have to have something similar to
>>> `reftex-parse-bibtex-entry' or `reftex-parse-bibitem' for amsrefs
>>> entries which knows about custom entry types and fields.
>> Well, what I would like to have is not really /that/ complicated (or
>> so I hope).  The thing I would really like to have is that when the
>> point is on a \cite (and btw, amsrefs has a bit different syntax for
>> \cite; this seems insane, but it's not), I can see some details of the
>> bib entry in the echo area.  I hear that RefTeX can do that (I haven't
>> tried it yet).
> Yes, it does that.
> ,----[ C-h v reftex-auto-view-crossref RET ]
> | reftex-auto-view-crossref is a variable defined in ‘reftex-vars.el’.
> | Its value is t
> | 
> | Documentation:
> | Non-nil means, initially turn automatic viewing of crossref info on.
> | Automatic viewing of crossref info normally uses the echo area.
> | Whenever point is idle for more than ‘reftex-idle-time’ seconds on the
> | argument of a \ref or \cite macro, and no other message is being
> | displayed, the echo area will display information about that cross
> | reference.  You can also set the variable to the symbol ‘window’.  In
> | this case a small temporary window is used for the display.
> | This feature can be turned on and off from the menu
> | (Ref->Options).
> | 
> | You can customize this variable.
> `----
> That's basically all implemented in reftex-dcr.el (dcr = display
> cross-ref).
>> Well, this could be easily implemented using eldoc (at least in simple
>> cases, where the bibliography is in the same file as the document; but
>> even if not, this doesn't seem extremely hard).  Maybe I should do
>> /this/ first, since I really, really need this - I can live without
>> it, but it's very inefficient.  (What I need is to be able to
>> determine quickly whether the reference I'm on points to a paper or a
>> book.)
>> But using eldoc when RefTeX exists seems wrong.
>> OTOH, the parsing functions which find the bib entry /somewhere/ and
>> extract information from it would be the same anyway.
> In theory, yes.  The thing you want to do seems to be quite doable with
> eldoc.  But if you also want to have support for `reftex-citation' and
> friends, then you need a real integration.


Maybe I should just watch `reftex-citation' in action with edebug.

>> BTW, this leads to another problem: general parsing of (La)TeX by
>> Emacs.  AFAICT, AUCTeX doesn't really have this.
> (La)TeX is not parsable. ;-)

It is - but only by (La)TeX itself;-).

In practice, of course, we can (and may) make some assumptions.  Like,
catcodes don't change.  (In real-life documents, the main place this
assumption might hurt is verbatim-like constructs.)

>> There is TeX-macro-boundaries, but it deals with "macros", i.e.,
>> control sequences /with parameters/.  What I would like to start with
>> would be /tokens/ (in TeX's meaning, which is made a bit difficult
>> because of the whitespace-after-control-word issue and because of the
>> blank-line-is-a-par issue).
> Another issue is catcodes.  You can change the meaning of any character
> at any place, and it's hard to keep track of that.  Basically, I can
> assume a working (La)TeX parser which could parse a file from the
> beginning to the end.  The problem is that you rarely want to do that
> but are only concerned about the region around point.
>> In fact, I wrote some functions to deal with that (they almost work, I
>> discovered yet another bug yesterday), and used them for one nice
>> thing (see and especially the
>> functions with "delimiter" in their name) - but that's another story,
>> though I'd like to see that integrated into AUCTeX, too.
> Looks interesting.

Thanks.  That is exactly what you write about: I do not parse the whole
file, but only a small portion around point.  One of the main things in
my library is this:

--8<---------------cut here---------------start------------->8---
(defun TeX+-move-beginning-of-token ()
  "Move to the beginning of TeX token the point is at.
Move also if the point is on whitespace.  Return a non-nil value
iff the point was moved."
--8<---------------cut here---------------end--------------->8---

Then, I could write this:

--8<---------------cut here---------------start------------->8---
(defun TeX+-info-about-token-beginning-at-point ()
  "Return a cons cell with car being the token beginning at point
and cdr being one of the following symbols: 'control-symbol,
'control-word, 'implicit-par, 'whitespace, 'normal-character,

For simplicity, if the point is at a backslash, which is the last
character in the buffer, it treats it as a control symbol."
--8<---------------cut here---------------end--------------->8---

And using those, I will be soon able to move by tokens.  The next step
could be making e.g. M-d and M-DEL kill a word /or/ a token, depending
on the context.  For instance, in this situation:


pressing M-DEL kills "foo", which doesn't make sense, and I want it to
kill "\foo".

I have some more plans for that library, too.  In general, I'd like to
have something like "a paredit for TeX".

> Bye,
> Tassilo


Marcin Borkowski
Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science
Adam Mickiewicz University

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