# Why does [pdf]latex not produce a page when nothing is in the body?

Having a blank PDF file may be useful for a certain situation that I don't know.

Neither

\documentclass{minimal}
\begin{document}
\end{document}


nor

\documentclass{article}
\begin{document}
\end{document}


produce a page when each of them is compiled using either pdflatex or latex.

Note: [pdf]latex can produce a blank single-page PDF with the following trick:

\documentclass{minimal}
\begin{document}
\
\end{document}


## Questions

Why does [pdf]latex not produce a blank single-page PDF when nothing is the input file body?

-
a general rule: nothing in the body, no output –  Herbert Jul 16 '11 at 10:17
Put \leavevmode or something inside to get an empty document. –  Andrey Vihrov Jul 16 '11 at 10:59
@xport ~ is more minimal: it's a non-breaking space. –  Seamus Jul 16 '11 at 13:37
@Seamus: It works. Excellent optimizer. :-) –  xport Jul 16 '11 at 13:38
The shortest named macro might be \null. :-) –  xport Jul 16 '11 at 13:53