{expansion} is about expanding tokens, including the manipulation of expansion order and the suppressing of expansion.

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14
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3answers
913 views

TeX macro and command expansion?

I have implemented couple of macros that should remove commas from numbers. It's nasty dirty stuff, but it works when input is number: \removecommas{12,34,56.7} % => 123456.7 But it stop working ...
14
votes
2answers
368 views

LaTeX3: How to get reliable control over the level of expansion?

Say you want to write LaTeX3 code that manages user data. Sometimes you want to process that data, but other times you just want to store it, move it around and return it unchanged (when developing a ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

renewcommand in a newcommand

I have a command \putansline{1}{2} that inserts 1 line of dots and prints the total score as [2]. I want to define a new command that if issued, will redefine this command so that it prints only the ...
14
votes
1answer
630 views

Why is \input not expandable?

In latex.ltx I found \def\input{\@ifnextchar\bgroup\@iinput\@@input} where \@@inputis expandable. I would like to know if there is an expandable version of \input. The problem comes from an example ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Allow underscore in PGFPlots tick labels read from table

I'm trying to use the text data from a table column as the tick labels in a plot. The text data contains underscores, which makes LaTeX throw a Missing $ inserted error. I'd usually get around this by ...
13
votes
4answers
501 views

Create a capitalized macro token using \csname

Two things I understand and one thing I don't: I often use \csname to create user-defined tokens. For instance, the following code uses \expandafter to expand everything between \csname and ...
13
votes
3answers
351 views

Expansion of first token in a tabular cell

Background I currently do some work on the collcell package which collects the content of a tabular/array cell and provides it to a user defined macro, e.g. using ...
13
votes
2answers
531 views

\expandafter within a \begingroup … \endgroup [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What does \begingroup\expandafter…\endgroup do? In many of Heiko Oberdiek's packages one sees this type of construction: ...
13
votes
2answers
185 views

Why does this use of `\expandafter` not work?

I've written the following code: \newif\ifconsecutive \consecutivefalse \newcommand{\myfirst}[1]{#1\consecutivetrue\expandafter\consecutivefalse} \newcommand{\mysecond}[1]{\ifconsecutive ...
12
votes
2answers
813 views

Macro to do nothing via a \def

I have encountered another expansion issue and have narrowed it down to this simple test case of a macro that does nothing, well at least it tries to do nothing, but is not all that successful. If I ...
12
votes
1answer
368 views

Why does \expandafter not expand the full { } group?

I thought I had understood the principle of expansion ... but apparently not! \def\a{AAA} \def\b{BBB} \expandafter\detokenize\expandafter{\a\b} I thought that the 2 \expandafter would store ...
12
votes
1answer
306 views

Text being output when none should be

I am confused as to why the MWE below produces any black text. As the code is below, the output is: However, if you comment out the \IfStrEq line then it works fine and the black text goes away? ...
12
votes
2answers
592 views

Define and set length in one command

Sorry this might be a very simple question, I am trying to cleanup a style file, and would like to write a command that basically runs the following code: ...
12
votes
2answers
824 views

Tricks to make macros expandable

Expandable macros are useful (I find working in the lion's mouth super cool). But they are difficult to write. Can more experienced users give hints that help achieve expandability? For example, we ...
12
votes
1answer
483 views

How to expand a macro used in the range of a foreach loop?

Motivating Example: Suppose that I want to draw the following tree: root / \ / \ / \ A B C D This is easy enough to do by explicitly drawing the two subtrees as children of ...
11
votes
4answers
238 views

Partially expanding a command

My \john command is defined like so: \def\john{\DontExpandMe} I would now like to repeatedly change its definition, to keep adding some extra stuff on the front. \foreach\i in {ape,bat,cow,dog} { ...
11
votes
3answers
225 views

How to pass a macro as the argument to \selectlanguage

The following mwe throws the error You haven't defined the language lang yet. \documentclass{article} \usepackage[american]{babel} \newcommand{\lang}{american} \selectlanguage{\lang} \begin{document} ...
11
votes
5answers
488 views

Basics of scanning

I'm trying to master the art of scanning text one character at a time. The following is what I've discovered so far. Is this as good as it gets? I would really prefer not to do all those \edefs as ...
11
votes
3answers
356 views

Expandable 'character scanning' command that preserves spaces

David Carlisle recently offered a clean and rather elegant TeX solution to a question about expandable 'character scanning' commands. Unfortunately, David's solution does not preserve spaces in the ...
11
votes
1answer
777 views

How to do \scantokens inside \edef without triggering “Runaway definition”

I'm trying to find a way to use the e-TeX \scantokens command inside [the equivalent of] an \edef (well, actually an \xdef, but presumably this does not make any real difference since that's just the ...
11
votes
1answer
146 views

Expansion of verbatim material

I am passing a file name in the command line which contains underscores and would like to print the name of the file in the resulting PDF. So, need some expansion magic so that the output is: The ...
11
votes
4answers
687 views

What's the best/right way to test an argument to a macro?

This is essentially asking how to do a case switch in LaTeX. I want to define a macro so that if the argument passed is one thing, then something happens, and if not then something else happens. I ...
11
votes
1answer
161 views

Why this output using \string on the empty csname

How does this exactly work? \expandafter\string\csname\endcsname I don't know what I would expect to come from there, but definitely not \csname\endcsname_ where _ is a space. I thought ...
11
votes
1answer
104 views

\toks register expansion issue - or is it?

I am trying to assemble a table that occurs multiple times throughout a document. It always consists of some fixed columns, followed by a set of columns that appear in one table but are not needed in ...
11
votes
1answer
209 views

expandable unit conversion

I'm writing a package to assist typesetting documents for some special Pen & Paper Fantasy RPG. In this fantasy setting, there are three types of coins: gold, silver and copper pieces, which ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

Defining new commands inside a for loop

I would like to define a number of related commands by using the counter in a for-loop. For example, I want to define 26 commands like this: \newcommand{\calA}{{\cal A}} \newcommand{\calB}{{\cal B}} ...
10
votes
5answers
595 views

How to create a “delay expansion” environment?

I don't want to use the following \begingroup \edef\next{\endgroup \noexpand\const{Xp}{\X(tp)} \noexpand\const{Yp}{\Y(tp)} \noexpand\const{Xf}{\X(tf)} \noexpand\const{Yf}{\Y(tf)} ...
10
votes
4answers
295 views

why can't \the be expanded?

\documentclass{article} \begin{document} \tracingmacros=2 \newlength{\len} \setlength{\len}{1cm} we want to write out \verb$\len$ in cm \the\len { oops, answer in pt} \setlength{\len}{0.0352\len} ...
10
votes
6answers
681 views

Is there a '\ReallyDontExpandUntilTheLastMinute' command?

There's a couple of things I want to be able to do that are quite similar and basically involve keeping back a macro expansion until the last minute. Possibly the simplest example is that I have a ...
10
votes
3answers
223 views

How to delay expansion

Consider the following document: \documentclass{article} \usepackage{polynomial} \begin{document} \def\a{-3} \def\b{-2} \def\c{-4} \[ \polynomial{\a,\b,\c}\quad\polynomial{-3,-2,-4} \] ...
10
votes
3answers
689 views

Problem with nested \noexpand and \edef

I have a LaTeX problem and want to explain it with the following code snippet: \documentclass{article} \begin{document} \def\myline{A} \edef\myline{\myline \noexpand\bf B} \edef\myline{\myline ...
10
votes
3answers
211 views

\expandafter and counters not playing nicely

My google-fu has finally failed me... I'm trying to write a package that will allow you say \addauthor{name, email} several times and have the title page properly formatted. Here is a minimal example ...
10
votes
2answers
360 views

How do I pass an expanded optional argument using expl3/xparse?

I have a command defined using xparse syntax: \DeclareDocumentCommand \foo { O{} m } {} Inside some other command (say, \bar), I want to call this command. The calling command (\bar) has to ...
10
votes
2answers
886 views

How to use \noexpand in an \edef?

Continuing with my struggle to deal with expansion issues, I am stuck on how to use an \edef properly. The code below with the switches set as: %\def\ApplyColorToTitle{} %\def\UseMathrmInTitle{} ...
10
votes
2answers
190 views

Preserving (and Controlling) Expandedness

In most cases, by the time output gets to your screen, arguments are fully expanded and my question is moot. But sometimes (verbatim being a common example), one wishes to operate on arguments with ...
10
votes
2answers
616 views

Concurrently interleaving execution of Lua and TeX in LuaTeX

The usual way to interleave Lua and TeX in generating documents is by invoking Lua from Tex through the \directlua facility and generate Tex from Lua using tex.print(). For example, consider the ...
10
votes
2answers
212 views

Execute non-expandable code inside a tabular environment

As there is no Expandable version of \InputIfFileExists or \IfFileExists, the question arises whether it is possible to execute non-expandable code in a tabular environment after all: File main.tex: ...
10
votes
4answers
397 views

Changing the behavior of $$ but not of $

I am trying to set things up so that occurrences of $$ are replaced by \] if in math mode, \[ otherwise. My strategy is to make $ active and have it behave differently depending on whether the ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Add space after LaTeX command

I'd like to call a command from LaTeX, which looks like this: bash -c "\myCommand -Tpdf #2.dot > #2.pdf" \myCommand is replaced by string variable, however the space after is also removed so I ...
10
votes
3answers
876 views

Censor text spanning multiple lines

I'd like to censor or hide some text while replacing it with the appropriate amount of white-space. The replacement text cannot be searchable. The text to be hidden usually exists in the LR mode. The ...
10
votes
3answers
179 views

Expandably change letter case and use inside \csname, without a package

I want to change the letter-case of a single character argument, and use that changed letter inside a \csname. And I want to do it without an additional package. For example, I want to pass a macro ...
10
votes
1answer
155 views

Environment with delayed expansion

I'm trying to define an environment test that stores its contents unexpanded in a macro \testcontents. For example, the code \newcommand{\cmd}{bad} \begin{test} \cmd \end{test} ...
10
votes
1answer
263 views

Macro parameter delimited by more than one delimiter

TeX user can simply create the macro with a parameter delimited by an arbitrary sequence of tokens. For example \def\macro #1delimiter{...#1...} Is it possible to create a macro with a parameter ...
10
votes
2answers
321 views

Save counter value inside command?

I'm trying to automatically generate commands based on the value of a counter: \documentclass{article} \newcounter{count} \newcommand\generator[1]% {% \stepcounter{count}% ...
10
votes
1answer
134 views

Expandable, very specific keyval processing

I am having a hard time trying to come up with an fully expandable keyval parsing macro which deals only with specific keys/values. I wouldn't even attempt this in full generality, that's way beyond ...
10
votes
1answer
61 views

Reading (input) a file whose name is created with a label

I don't want to get into the details of why I want to do this, but I would like to: create a new counter called filenumber; create a file whose filename is \jobname\thefilenumber.txt and write to ...
10
votes
1answer
99 views

LaTeX3 Property lists and expansion

So, I'm trying to pass the "date" value associated with the current environment to a property list defined by a macro. It doesn't seem to work and I'm not sure why. Here's a MWE: ...
10
votes
1answer
303 views

“Flatten” macros prior to sharing LaTeX file

Is there a way/an existing tool to process a LaTeX source document such that for a given list of macro definitions (using \newcommand), calls to those macros are replaced by their expanded version? ...
10
votes
1answer
511 views

Extract the logically first slide in a Beamer overlay specification?

When writing Beamer slides for a talk, I find that I often want to have some text (usually math) visible on a group of slides and be alerted on only the first slide in the group. For example, I can ...
9
votes
5answers
380 views

Parse dotted string, extracting last part

I want a macro that will separate a string like "1.2.3" into two parts: the part until the last dot (call that the context) and the last number. This seems a pretty basic application of a helper ...