# Automatically use \cr or & (for matrices) in macro?

I'm trying to write a macro to abstract different possible representations of matrices. In particular, we're changing whether we want to represent a particular matrix as a column or row vector. My hope was to do something like the following:

\documentclass{article}

\usepackage{amsmath,pgffor}

\newcommand\Hor{\begin{pmatrix}\foreach \n [count=\ni] in {#1} {\ifnum \ni=1 \n \else &\n \fi}\end{pmatrix}}
\newcommand\Ver{\begin{pmatrix}\foreach \n [count=\ni] in {#1} {\ifnum \ni=1 \n \else \cr\n \fi}\end{pmatrix}}

\begin{document}

\section*{Some things that work}

$\begin{pmatrix} 1 & 2 & 3 \end{pmatrix}$

$\begin{pmatrix} 1 \cr 2 \cr 3 \end{pmatrix}$

\section*{Some things that don't}

$\Hor{1,2,3}$

$\Ver{1,2,3}$

\end{document}


In particular, I'd like to be able to have a single macro which switches between row and column matrices, ergo using \foreach instead of just having &s or \crs in the arguments.

This seems like it should be easy... what am I missing?

• The \foreach loop is grouped. – Henri Menke Dec 12 '19 at 23:05
• You might be interested in Is there a way to automatically transpose a matrix written in Latex? which shows many ways to create the transpose of a matrix. The sagetex solution given there will be helpful if you're doing extensive work with matrices. For example, here or here – DJP Dec 12 '19 at 23:25
• why \cr??? \cr is not supported syntax for any ams or standard latex matrix construct. It is a tex primitive that underlies \\  so it sometimes works but it shouldn't be used in pmatrix ever. – David Carlisle Dec 13 '19 at 3:10

As Henri said in the comment, the \foreach loop is grouped, so it isn't really fit for this type of application. You can use expl3's \seq_use:Nn <seq var> {<thing>} to add <thing> between each item of <seq var>:

\documentclass{article}

\usepackage{amsmath,xparse}

\ExplSyntaxOn
\seq_new:N \l_trevion_tmp_seq
\NewDocumentCommand \Hor { m }
{ \trevion_pmatrix:nn {#1} { & } } % Use main command with arg and &
\NewDocumentCommand \Ver { m }
{ \trevion_pmatrix:nn {#1} { \\ } } % Use main command with arg and \\
\cs_new_protected:Npn \trevion_pmatrix:nn #1 #2
{
% Split the argument at each comma, and store in the seq var
\seq_set_from_clist:Nn \l_trevion_tmp_seq {#1}
\begin{pmatrix}
% Use the seq var with #2 (& or \\) between each pair of items
\seq_use:Nn \l_trevion_tmp_seq {#2}
\end{pmatrix}
}
\ExplSyntaxOff

\begin{document}

\section*{Some things that work}

$\begin{pmatrix} 1 & 2 & 3 \end{pmatrix}$

$\begin{pmatrix} 1 \cr 2 \cr 3 \end{pmatrix}$

\section*{Some things that don't}

$\Hor{1,2,3}$

$\Ver{1,2,3}$

\end{document} It's easier if you use a command as separator, as then no loop is required. \documentclass{article}

\usepackage{amsmath,pgffor}

\newcommand\Hor{{\def\,{&}\begin{pmatrix}#1\end{pmatrix}}}
\newcommand\Ver{{\def\,{\\}\begin{pmatrix}#1\end{pmatrix}}}

\begin{document}

$\Hor{1\,2\,3}$

$\Ver{1\,2\,3}$

\end{document}