Tex is a notorious typesetting tool, but it's not the only one. I wonder why shouldn't the site scope be broaden to that? That includes:

  • Typesetting theories
  • Typesetting industry
  • Typesetting tools

Of course one can propose a new site, there is no problem in keeping the current scope. But if there is no harm and there are benefits for that, then we can make use of the current knowledge and user bases.

From what I understand about Typesetting - Wikipedia, only TeX is the dominant player in the field. (Word or InDesign are not typesetting tools obviously). So non-TeX questions wouldn't swallowed TeX questions.

  • 6
    Almost all typesetting is done with tools other than TeX, and there is a huge amount of graphic design needed to cover all of typography: I'd say TeX would be swallowed and vanish in such a revision
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Mar 3 at 16:57
  • Which typesetting tools are you referring? From what I understand about Typesetting - Wikipedia, only TeX is the dominant player in the field. (Word or InDesign are not typesetting tools obviously). As for "huge amount of graphic design needed to cover all of typography", I guess we need to differentiate typesetting and graphic design
    – Ooker
    Mar 4 at 4:30
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    My answer to the title question: no.
    – CarLaTeX
    Mar 4 at 7:03
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    @Ooker Even if we skip GUIs, there are big players in the automated space: 3B2/ArborText is the most obvious. Then there are things like Typst, Patoline, ANT (going back a bit), ...
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Mar 4 at 20:21
  • 3
    The Wikipedia article you point to fails to mention several other composition systems that I've worked with professionally (for publication of mathematics). In addition to other systems mentioned here, a number of journals still prepare their "camera copy" with Word, and Microsoft would have you believe that it is not only for document processing but also for final composition. TeX and friends are held in high regard by users in technical fields, but they're not the tools used for composition of newspapers and magazines. So please keep this site limited to TeX. Mar 25 at 2:04
  • @barbarabeeton what's camera copy?
    – Ooker
    Mar 25 at 3:54
  • @Ooker -- You're probably too young to have seen the large-frame cameras that were used to photograph the finished pages as a step in preparing printing plates. "Camera copy" is the final physical copy that has been approved for publication. Mar 25 at 12:40

1 Answer 1


No. This site is meant to focus on typesetting/programming using TeX (and its derivatives and closely related software) and it should stick to it.

Typesetting in general is too broad a topic to be covered on this site and it has so many aspects (think of typesetting math, music, in a certain language, on specific materials using a certian technique ...) which alone are worth discussing on their own site. Cartain aspects of typesetting are therefore better asked at https://graphicdesign.stackexchange.com , https://academia.stackexchange.com or https://math.stackexchange.com or somewhere else entirely (maybe even on a new site) depending on the context.

Typesetting can actually be done using a huge variety of tools (digital as well as analog). You say that TeX is the dominant player which to my understanding can only be true if exclude all tools that are not programming languages explicitly dedicated to typesetting. But if we say that this site is about "programming languages explicitly dedicated to typesetting" this feels just like rephrasing things and using a description of TeX in exchange for its name.

Also, you actually can typeset using whatever programming language you choose. If we expand the scope of this site to typesetting (even in the most narrow sense), the original focus on TeX might well vanish completely and people won't be able to find answers to questions related to TeX. Finally, TeX can do more than only typesetting, and questions related to such things are on-topic on this site currently, whereas they might not be if we change the scope as you suggest.

  • So you mean that TeX is the only programming language explicitly dedicated to typesetting?
    – Ooker
    Mar 5 at 18:15
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    @Ooker No, what I was trying to say was that your argument is a bit contradictory. On the one hand you say that we should expand the scope of this site to "typesetting". In my opinion that would include a huge scope of different tools. Then you say that TeX is one of a few typesetting tools, but if it really is, then changing the scope would not change much. I think, that whether or not TeX is "the real" tool for typesetting is a matter of opinion really and we should probably not base the scope of this site on an opinon. Mar 5 at 18:24
  • In my understanding, there are indeed many programming languages explicitly dedicated to typesetting, like what Joseph Wright wrote above, so that's not an opinion. The claim that Tex is the dominant one of them, and the claim that it's the real one, are both opinions, but I think most people would agree with the former. I agree that typesetting is a bad scope for this site, but if it's about programming languages explicitly dedicated to typesetting, l don't see why it still fails to serve TeX community. Graphic Design still serves Photoshop (a dominant graphic design tool) community well.
    – Ooker
    Mar 5 at 23:49

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