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LaTeX Anonymous 06/02/2020 (Tue) 08:35:25 No. 334
Although not entirely in the spirit of /t/, let's talk a bit about this typesetting tool. What do you use it for? Do you like using it? Encountering any problems? What program do you use? I mainly use it for my academic reports, since it works very well with formulae and chemical reactions. Anything else would be an abstract horror, so to say. I have been using TeXworks+JabRef, and have mostly been satisfied with the results - except for the occasional hiccup like the formula above. The only drawback is that there is not a proper dark theme, so it gets a little straining on the eyes sometimes.
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Seems entirely in the spirit of /t/ to me. And it's not like /sci/ is around to claim the topic. Personally, I just compile to PDF with pdflatex. My distribution handles the rest. If I want a dark theme then I use a PDF reader with a dark mode setting. A lot of them have this, or at least a high-contrast mode which is fine for text-based documents. Do you have any favorite libraries? Though simple, I definitely get a lot of mileage out of the enumerate library. Makes it very simple to make lists in any format I'd like. Recently I've taken to the algorithm2e library for typesetting algorithms. It's not perfect, but I like the results better than the other ones I've tried.
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Had to make a css myself, but this template from Stackoverflow is not too shabby. Gonna slightly lighten the blue and red text, but this is much easier on the eyes already.
>>335 I use the libraries mhchem and cleverref a lot, and a custom "package" I wrote myself. By using \QU[...]{}, I have a bunch of units and quantities ready in mathmode for my to use in plaintext. Think about simple units like second or meter, but also more complex units like wavenumber or molecular weight are included, as \QUwn{} and \QUmw{} respectively. Saves me a lot of time when writing the analyses of my reports, since some of those units are quite time-consuming to type out individually.
I use and evangelize LaTeX quite a bit, the latter among people at my degree (physics), which, believe it or not, most are still using Word. I guess being a lemming sucks ass. Still, I managed to make some inroads. As to which packages I use, sadly I'm a bit of a basic bitch; I use babel to have some characters get typeset properly as I write them, split and gathered to have multiline equations and other things I don't remember, and maybe fontspec and using xelatex instead of pdflatex if I don't want my document have that obvious LaTeX look to it. I haven't bothered looking into bibliography management since I don't reference many papers, yet.
>>343 > many colleagues use Word Same here, chemical engineering/chemistry. Bothers me more than it should - for undergrads it's excusable because of the learning slope, but for anyone with a degree to use Word is just some straight-up degeneracy. > basic latex look I love the clean look - if you know what you're doing, you can make the paper in any style you'd like. > I don't reference many papers yet Bad practice and weak argument. I mainly use them because of the quick and proper referencing style, and the FOSS program I use (JabRef) is really good at fetching the right information from databases to apply to my papers. It saves me the hassle of arranging, rearranging and typesetting everything. Try it out, you can get a good feel of how things work with less than 5 papers, and it makes managing your sources a whole lot easier.
Zathura, Makefile, vim and biblatex. Just paste the latex bib from articles. Currently getting into koma-scripts. What do you think about calculated margin vs setting it via geometry? >>345 Undergrads should be taught Latex as an requirement.
I'm a mathematician and I used LaTeX a lot during my student days for taking lecture notes and finally for writing my thesis. We don't need much in terms of computer skills, but LaTeX is an unspoken but absolute requirement. Anything else and you will be laughed out of the faculty. I did on some occasions use Markdown and Pandoc when I was giving a presentation, it allowed me to write my talk in Markdown once and have it exported to a nice presentation PDF (using Beamer) and and a handout sheet, both of which had the exact same content but adequate formatting for each one. That was really nice. I use Vim for writing and Zathura for display, both running at the same time. Zathura can update live as the PDF changes, and I use a makefile so I don't have to enter the entire compile command manually. I used to use TeXShop when I was still a Mac user, it was nice for someone who didn't know what he was doing, but dropping it was for the better. However, now that I have a Pajeet tier job I don't get to use it anymore, whenever I have to write something Markdown or reStructuredText is just good enough >>343 >I use and evangelize LaTeX quite a bit, the latter among people at my degree (physics), which, believe it or not, most are still using Word. I guess being a lemming sucks ass. Still, I managed to make some inroads. It's a shame because I think at least in academic use it should be an absolute requirement. I don't expect grandma to start using LaTeX, but I think someone with an academic should be expected to have the brain capacity to step out of his comfort zone little. And it's not really hard to learn. I took a one-week course at my university after my first or second semester, and it was pretty nice and chill. As I said above, originally I used a special LaTeX environment, but over time as I learned more and more about Unix, the command line, version control, makefiles and so on, I was able to reap more and more benefits from my one initial investment. With Word you get one thing and that's it, it does not mix well with other tools. By the end I was able to write my entire thesis in LaTeX, I even drew the graphics entirely in code using TikZ/pgf, added program source code, managed my bibliography and did all of that from the command-line. LaTeX can be a bitch at times, but once you get it under control it's a tool with surgical precision.
>Anything else and you will be laughed out of the faculty. And your shitty PDFs get laughed at by everyone outside academia. PDF is shit and bloat. Who the fuck thought it would be a good idea to execute a garbage stack machine language to draw a document before it being readble. Academia is mostly shit. Latex is shit and bloat. May as well just scan a handwritten piece of paper to a PNG.
>>348 Thank for revealing yourself as a forever NEET. Everyone uses PDFs for basically everything that shouldn't be extensively edited and isn't a presentation: nobody cares about "bloat" or licensing when they get a format that just works and displays consistently across very different machines.
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>>351 Well, enjoy your shitty bloated vuln infested document viewers then. Meanwhile, I will enter into the future.
>>354 PDF is bloat and it's technically a proprietary format, but at least the spec is open. It's inevitable we have to send documents to normalfags and when that happens it's better to send it as a PDF than a DOCX or whatever shitty format Microsoft has invented lately. It's inevitable that an ODF will break when they try to open it in Word. Google Docs uploads also tend to break on LibreOffice shit. And of course for LaTeX what the hell else are you gonna output to? PDF is universal. It's shitty but there's alternate document viewers that handle PDF without too much bloat. The format itself is shit but there's no solving it unless someone can offer a competing format that is inherently less shit and it catches on. But knowing corporations it never will because they all have PDF viewers installed.
>>354 >enjoy >implying You do what you gotta do, the world ain't perfect so we're stuck with PDF as it's the only document format that mostly works everywhere.
>>334 >What do you use it for? For documents with lots of equations and documents that will eventually be printed. Using it for everything is not good idea. In engineering everyone writes specifications and technical documentation in word and nobody cares about how anything looks. It's too easy to get carried away with typography and cool features, but at the end of the day nobody cares if there is too much whitespace in paragraphs and there are no ff and fi ligatures. >Do you like using it? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Tables are still pain to make, documentation can be intimidating (tikz, pgfplots, ...). >What program do you use? Emacs with auctex + reftex + yas snippets + flyspell mode. This works well for me, since it automatically generates and inserts references and bibliography. It's so easy to add bibliography with emacs - drag and drop paper, emacs reads its DOI or ISBN and inserts bib entry automatically. Bibliography is pain in word in comparison, so I wouldn't use it for academic work. I've come around full circle in my document preparation and started appreciating wabi-sabi nature of word/libreoffice documents. Even though it's crappy from typography point of view, there is something about imperfections nature of those documents that makes them interesting to look at. For example take a look at pic related: pixelated logo, indentation, no justification, no hyphenation, table title too big, spacing in tables... But I kinda like it despite it's flaws. And making that table would be suicide in latex. I even started using gnumeric for calculating various things instead of scripting - it's just so simple and easy. Even if I rice my emacs to do something similar it would be convoluted and clunky. Sometimes it's best to get rid of your OCD and just do the work, sometimes I tend to worry about my tools more than my work.
There's something that still bothers me quite a bit when doing anything remotely serious, tables are tedious to make, like what >>374 says. Isn't there any way this could be automated? Have a package parse a .csv or some shit. >>345 Alright, I'll look into automatic bibliography management, I have a project coming up which is just about that, referencing a bunch of papers. >>346 At my degree, it was a sort of unofficial minicourse, that didn't even give you credits.
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>>388 The main issue with tables is that the notation is bulky and easy to make a mistake with. And you have to type a bunch of stuff in by hand. Tables are just better-suited to visual editing. There's packages to automate pulling in data from a source to some degree, but I usually just use a table formatter. There's at least one available for free online. For a small table, this is an acceptable solution and is faster than formatting a table manually. >unofficial minicourse, that didn't even give you credits I just took some courses that required typed homework with mathematical symbols and they mentioned LaTeX with a wink and a nudge. They didn't want to offer a course, so they bullied us into doing it. I had been meaning to learn it for some time so I jumped right in. A lot of my classmates, including many of my partners, refused. They kept playing with Word. One time, I had to chew a guy out for spending hours re-creating my work in Word and not making any progress on the assignment. It was incredibly frustrating. A lot of students these days just use Overleaf or something as a compromise. Makes tables easy, avoids having to manage a package, and they can typeset math. But it feels like as much of a sellout as Jupyter Notebooks.
>>389 I know how notation is, I've had to do quite a few tables. It's dreadful. I think I'll look into such packages. By the way, Jupyter Notebooks are a sellout? In what sense? I mostly just looked at those in order to have some sort of half decent pseudo-Mathematica handling of symbolic math and such. It doesn't even seem to come close to Mathematica in most respects, though.
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>>388 >>374 >>389 Hey fellas, do you know how I do that? I've got a quite simple and quick solution actually, it's called being a cheating fucking nigger lmao https://www.tablesgenerator.com
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>>402 > hyperlinks are not censored properly
>>391 My problem wit Jupyter is that it's a backwards solution to a non-problem. I understand why having executable sections is convenient, especially for mathematicians and physicists. But the entire thing runs in a broken Web GUI that strongly encourages you to use their own servers for it. They (and Google) want to charge a premium for additional RAM or CPU time, and they leak memory like a sieve. You can run and connect to it locally or on your own server, but 99% of the people who like Jupyter Notebook will not be able to do this. I've worked with physicists and they were genuinely shocked I ran Python from the terminal and debugged by either printing stuff out or stepping through with a debugger. They cannot debug unless they look at it in Jupyter Notebook and execute all intermediary steps. And their code is absolutely jumbled. Copied from colleagues who copied it from colleagues, with slight tweaks, none of them understanding proper syntax, just how to mess with the statement for what they're trying to computer. Jupypter is a sellout because their goal is to upsell a Python environment to people who need it but don't want to learn it properly. Half their traffic probably comes from "how to Machine Learning" tutorials.
>>404 >people who are experts in physics aren't automatically experts at coding Stop the presses. More seriously, have you tried the vscode debugger? I know it's fantastic for C++.
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>>404 > shitty code and scientists You know what I had to learn a year ago, and have been using quite regularly since? MatLab. That can be an abstract kind of hell some times.
>>402 I like your solution, Dalalalalalalai-sama, except for the fact that you're basically outsourcing your information to a website owned by some random faggot that could be selling it to whoever. So while this'll do when in a crutch, I'd rather have a solution that a) is FOSS and b) runs in my own 'puter. >>404 I see. Well, I had to forgo Jupyter because honestly it doesn't seem like it could ever come close to Mathematica, I guess I was a fool for believing it ever could, especially if that is not its primary goal, but the flashy GUI somehow made me think otherwise. Talking about scientists and Python, I'm using it as a MATLAB replacement, and since I'm not dealing with anything too complex (linear regressions, doing ODE with an arbitrary function like a gaussian, numerical calculations galore) it's not like I need MATLAB, even though we were encouraged to use it since we were taught it at a course that was about numerical and statistical methods. Plotting is nice but it has some weird defaults, some of which I've still not modified and I want to. I'm running it like you do, on the terminal, and if shit goes awry, I just drop some print statements here and there to see if I'm doing anything retarded. I don't think I need a debugger.
Tables are fine and using an online thing is shitty but an okay bandaid fix in a pinch. What makes me rage with TeX is trying to do page layout. Images have a tendency to not align as specified, either doing nothing or floating to the top of the page. You need to be a wizard with nested subframes to do anything decent. No libraries handle it well, and the few that are okay at it tend to break when combined with other libraries. It shouldn't be that hard to size an image, specify a starting position on the page, give it a margin, and ask text to flow around it. And once tables are involved it's officially a living nightmare. Better hope you don't have to do it on a deadline
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>you have to compile twice to get Table of Contents to work The absolute state of Latex
>>334 I used LaTeX a lot in uni, especially for larger papers with lots of citations, my master's thesis, etc. My resume is still written in LaTeX actually, though I should probably change it. I don't like LaTeX for smaller papers because of the syntax and compile times. I fell for the meme and use groff -mom for that stuff.
>>557 > My resume is still written in LaTeX actually I tried that, but in the end it looks exactly like every other LaTeX resume, except you can change the color a little. If you want your resume to catch an employer's attention it should look like you put actual effort into it, not as if you just dumped your text into the same template everyone else is using. I ended up just asking someone to do it for me in InDesign. I tried Skribus, but the lack of any live preview made it completely unusable. >>435 Unless someone comes up with a better idea of how you can know the number of a page before the pages have been typeset, that's what we are stuck with. You can use latexmk for compilation, it's a wrapper around the latex binary which will automatically recompile your code when necessary. Then you have to run the command only once.
>>563 I would agree, but so many employers now use different shitty application services that a resume is basically just formality. Having a well-written cover letter tends to be far more important in my experience. Technology is also my hobby, not my profession, so it being in LaTeX at all makes it different from other applicants.
>>334 I have never touched raw latex, BUT, I use Lyx all the time for my projects. It's incredible how good shit looks when you take your time to work on it.
>>566 I'm torn on the issue of cover letters. On one hand, I've never needed one and been hired at some pretty nice places. On the other hand, I think Bloomberg literally threw my resume in the trash for not having one, because their recruiter was very impressed. It's not uncommon for HR and Engineering to have totally different ideas of what makes a good resume. You have to pass through HR's shitty filter to get to someone who knows enough to be impressed by your work. That said, my resume was made in Open/Libre Office. I should rewrite it in Latex, but it will take some time to figure out how to replicate it. The spacing is also really tight. My advice for resumes is to make good use of horizontal space to fit extra info in. If you want to cap it at one page, this is a must. >>616 It really is incredible how effortless the typesetting is once you learn to describe what you want. It's a steep learning curve for newcomers, though. But the results really are on-par with professionally-printed books. Sometimes you can match the quality with a Word document, usually you make unmaintainable in the process.
>>334 Wouldn't want to use anything else for scientific writing. When I got started with it I usually just used emacs but at some point I had to write longer and longer documents split into many files so I switched to using texstudio and jabref which both work great on every platform. The languagetool that can be added to texstudio must be one biggest ressource hog I've ever encountered.
TeX is completely superfluous today. It was meant to generate justified text in a printing format. For everything beyond you need packages that need to be ported to your tex system for your OS and CPU architecture. Now it can't really do anything but creating PDFs well. However today we have better alternatives. There is html, epub, odt formats and WYSIWYG editors. Everything supports instantly rendered justified text. And you can print them too. Or write your XHTML by hand. >buuuuuut maaaath and physics Use any MathML editor. If you want to put it in the aforementioned formats, just compile them into an SVG. You can't extract the math formula from it but neither can you from a PDF. Your teacher lied to you. TeX completely pointless and like PDF or Postscript not compatible with anything because the data is actually a script. I learned LaTeX, so don't try the "you can't judge what you don't know" excuse on me.
And you can still put the MathML into the SVG by using a <metadata> tag.
>>793 >Now it can't really do anything but creating PDFs well. You say that like this is something nobody ever needs. LaTeX is pretty much set and forget, a little inital setup and it just generates pretty much perfect documents. WYSIWYG editors always end up being a hassle. I've seen many documents over the years and the ones written in LaTeX always looked a little better. They also tend to support the features of PDF readers better. (X)HTML is fine for the web but it has a pretty bloated syntax and I don't see why anyone would use it for something that doesn't require it.
>>796 Where's your LaTeX e-reader, nerd?
>>796 >They also tend to support the features of PDF readers better. Grandpa. PDF doesn't even support Unicode properly. I would not want to store text in that format if I don't absolutely have to. Further if the reader only extracts the text, the entire positioning TeX did was completely useless.
Using katex. Had to \mathbb some shit, otherwise mostly has what I want out of the box
>>807 >>808 I'd rather use pdfs because when I cite things with regular page numbers even the actual grandpas won't complain about it. Otherwise epub would be more convenient for reading, yeah.
>>820 If you cite it by using copy and paste, I can just copy and paste your citation into the search function and thus find the point, you took it from.

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