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Enjoy TeX pearls diving!

TeX beauties and oddities

A permanent call for pearls

What is wanted:
  • short TeX or MetaPost macro/macros (A4 page or a screen at most),
  • the code should be generic, potentially understandable by plain-oriented users,
  • results need not be useful or serious, but language-specific, tricky, preferably non-obvious,
  • obscure oddities, weird behaviour, dirty tricks and traps in all typesetting-related technology are all welcome,
  • the code should be explainable in a couple of minutes.

Already collected pearls can be found at this website and archive GUST materials. All pearl-divers and pearl-growers are kindly asked to send the pearl-candidates to, where Paweł Jackowski, the pearl-collector, is waiting impatiently. The pearls market-place is active the entire year, not just before annual BachoTeX Conference.

Note: The person submitting pearl proposals and/or participating pearls session during BatchoTeX meeting needs not necessarily be the inventor. Well known hits are also welcome, unless already presented.


Since some mature programmers felt indignant of calling ugly TeX constructs “Pearls od TeX programming”, we decided not to iritate them any longer. We hope they will accept “TeX beauties and oddities” as the session title.

If you yourself have something that fits the bill, please consider. If you know somebody's work that does, please let us know, we will contact the person. We await your contributions even if you are unable to attend the conference. In such a case you are free either to elect one of the participants to present your work or “leave the proof to the gentle reader” (cf. e.g.

Needless to say that all contributions will be published in a separate section of the conference proceedings, possibly also reprinted in different TeX bulletins.