I did a presentation this week on how TeX and LaTeX are a lot like the C/C++ problem, with the additional complication that TeX does not have a Context-Free Grammar. For this, I read up on (some of) The TeXBook, and ended up writing/learning quite a lot about Plain/Knuth TeX. In particular, I was very satisfied with the philosophy of TeX, and its minimalism; I love that an empty program is


I'd echoed these feelings before; some years ago, when I understood less of TeX than I did now, I nonetheless wrote this mishmash of RegEx and Python I called "TeXDown," and one of the things it boasted was that an empty document would result in... well, an empty document.


As part of this presentation on TeX/LaTeX, I thought it would be fun to write the presentation in Plain TeX itself, and, with a bit of macro definition, it turned out that this was not at all impractical. In particular, the bare control over the glue space was very convenient to get nicely spaced stuff.

So, I collected these macros into a "package." Here's what a presentation looks like with nobeamer:

\input nobeamer.tex


{\center %
    \header My presentation
    \subheader (with subtitle)}


{\center %
    Thank you for coming to my talk.


I would still use PowerPoint with the Computer Modern font if given the chance, but you could genuinely do worse than nobeamer if you're in Linux.

You can find the TeX file in the Github repository linked above; linked again below for convenience.


(You can email me your thoughts at miguelmurca+flounder﹫gmail⋅com)