I'm used to insert a space after a command by using the {}, e.g. \mycommand{} some other text, in order to circumvent the space-gobbling of commands.

I'm wondering if it's best or what are the specific drawbacks or differences between the following:

\mycommand{} some text

\mycommand\ some text

\mycommand\space some text

is it a matter of habit or do the spaces and mechanics differ?



I prefer the \myCommand{} appraoch since there is no risk that I create a false command by accident as with \myCommand\ (e. g. when I forget the space after \ and LaTeX complains that the "command" is unknown). I have never used \space before.

There is also a package called xspace. One of the authors is the Stackexchange high reputation user David Carlisle.

The xspace package provides a command called \xspace which will decide if a space is necessary or not. Here's an example taken from the manual:

Command Definition

\newcommand{\gb}{Great Britain\xspace}

Use of Command

\gb is a very nice place to live.\\
\gb, a small island off the coast of France.\\
\gb\footnote{The small island off the coast of France.}
is a very nice place to live.


enter image description here

So the benefit is, that you don't need to worry about your question when you define your own commands.

Related Questions

| improve this answer | |
  • Is there a good solution for macros with arguments? (to avoid \gb{big}, I like it here -> 'GB , I like it here'). Preferably w/o xspace package – Dániel Somogyi May 26 at 14:16
  • @Dániel Somogyi Have a look at the csquotes package. – Dr. Manuel Kuehner May 26 at 16:10

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