LaTeX tips

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Revision as of 18:39, 20 February 2009 by Aditya.khanna (Talk | contribs)
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This will be a repository of tips for using LaTeX. To add a tip, just create a link below, for example: Separating the Red Sea and save the page. The link will be red. Just click on the red link and you will automatically be editing the page. Nothing like a blank canvas to share your hard-gleaned wisdom!


Recommendations for downloads

  • Best Windows LaTeX compiler Miktex
  • Best Windows editor TeXnicCenter
  • Best Mac editor TeXShop
  • Best Mac compiler MacTeX
  • A Linux Integrated LaTeX Enivronment Kile
  • For any Linux/Unix system, simply use your favourite Unix editor to type the mylatex.tex file. Here is a basic list of Unix commands. To check your spellings, you can say

ispell mylatex.tex (.tex extension may be omitted)

in the shell.

General setup

  • Compiling the LaTeX using pdfTeX allows the creation of pdf files as the final product and the inclusion of graphics created as pdf files from some other source. For many people this is more convenient than using postscript files which may be the default for LaTeX compilers and editors. pdfTeX works nicely with images produced as pdf files (see R/General Information on Plotting).

Converting from other formats

There are a variety of tools for converting to LaTeX from other formats, many of which are described here. For equations, the only software that QERMunists have found to be truly great is GrindEQ's Word2LaTeX. Unfortunately, that one costs $129, but they have a "fully functional evaluation/download version", so as long as you fully embrace LaTeX after converting your files, then you could get by with just the free trial.

MathType (which is free to UW students), will nicely convert individual equations written in Equation Editor or MathType to LaTeX. Within MathType, use the menu for Preferences > Translators, and select "Translation to other language" and pick the default, "TeX -- LaTeX 2.09 and later". Now highlight any equation in the MathType window and paste into a text file. The pasted text should appear as text in LaTeX syntax.

Anyone have any success converting using Open Office, or even seeing MathType-produced equations in Open Office?

Converting to other formats

On Linux or any Unix-like system, in the terminal just type latex2rtf myfile where myfile has extension .tex. The output is a .rtf file, which can be opened in Open Office and saved as a .doc. It didn't seem to do the equations, though graphics worked out quite nicely. I will eventually test how it handles bibliographies and add that here.

Does anyone have good ideas on converting from tex to others on Windows or anything else? Do any of the popular tex front ends (texnic center, for example) have options for this?

Useful Links

  • Great resource to get started and have questions answered: LaTeX WikiBook
  • A quick cheat sheet of all the things you forget. Cheat Sheet

Additional Pages

Topics include:

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