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MathGroup Archive 1999

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reliable, easy TeX+Mathematica

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg18591] reliable, easy TeX+Mathematica
  • From: sidles at u.washington.edu (John A. Sidles)
  • Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999 01:01:25 -0400
  • Organization: University of Washington, Seattle
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

This note is mainly for students in math, physics, and engineering.

Let's say you like using Mathematica for symbol manipulation, 
and yet you have noticed that your colleagues, the journals, 
and textbooks mainly use TeX for top-quality typesetting.  

You want to use them together, but you are a student without 
a whole lot of resources ... what do you do?

Here is solution that is quick, easy, reliable, professional-
quality, and *free*, and which I particularly commend to students:

    (1) Open (a) Mathematica, (b) TeX, and (c) a (paper) lab notebook.
        (I use the public-domain OzTeX program --- works great!)
    (2) In your lab notebook, outline your solution strategy.  
        Because if you can't at least outline your solution strategy 
        on paper, there's not much chance that Mathematica (or any 
        other program) will be able to help you.
    (3) In Mathematica, carry through the algebra of your
        solution strategy -- this is fun and easy *iff* you
        have a good solution strategy clearly in mind.
    (4) In AMS-LaTeX, write your article, book, or report
        --> Pasting results from Mathematica into TeX
            using //TeXForm (they generally require a little bit of 
            cleaning up, but at least the signs and factors of two are 
            guaranteed correct)
        --> Pasting results from TeX into Mathematica
            **** this is the trick ****
            I just capture the TeX'd equations directly from the screen 
            into the paste buffer, then paste them directly into 
            Mathematica!  No muss, no fuss, never fails, and the 
            typography is perfect.
    (5) Then printout the TeX and Mathematica & paste them
        back into your notebook

The end result is that your paper notebook, your Mathematica
notebook, and your TeX'd final article are perfectly synched,
and you enjoy the best of all three worlds. 

For students, the chief advantage of this strategy is that 
the results are of absolutely the highest quality --- 
there is no better symbol manipulation environment than 
Mathematica, and no better typesetting environment that TeX.

By the way, I also paste from TeX into LabView with great 
success -- it is a wonderful way to document your LabView vi's.
See, e.g.,

    ftp://ftp.u.washington.edu/public/sidles/  ...
              MRFMLabViewVis/Documentation.pdf
              
Good luck to students ... JAS




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