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The LaTeX Companion, Second Edition by Michel Goossens, Frank Mittelbach, Chris Rowley, David Carlisle, Johannes Braams

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Chapter 10. Graphics Generation and Manipulation

TeX probably has the best algorithm for formatting paragraphs and building pages from them. But in this era of ever-increasing information exchange, most publications do not limit themselves to text—the importance of graphical material has grown tremendously. TeX by itself does not address this issue, as it deals only with positioning (black) boxes on a page. Knuth, however, provided a hook for implementing “features” that are not available in the basic language, via the \special command. The latter command does not affect the output page being formatted, but TeX will put the material, specified as an argument in the \special command, literally at the current point in the .dvi file.1 The dvi driver ...

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