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Re: Re: Re: Which editor do you use for math

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg95629] Re: [mg95595] Re: [mg95552] Re: Which editor do you use for math
  • From: DrMajorBob <btreat1 at>
  • Date: Fri, 23 Jan 2009 05:07:00 -0500 (EST)
  • Organization: Deep Space Corps of Engineers
  • References: <gkppt1$dpi$> <>
  • Reply-to: drmajorbob at

My advice? Stick to Mathematica and/or Word. (Unless you're willing to  
learn LaTeX from the ground up, the hard way.)

I spent several hours last night sleuthing how to use Mac fonts in LyX,  
which led to using them in TeXShop, which led to indecipherable  
instructions for using LyX with XeTex, which led to utter confusion. I  
found a LyX document that "explained" and "demonstrated" how to do this;  
but that document explained exactly nothing and could not be typeset,  
neither with LaTeX NOR XeTeX. Trying to do so popped up error messages  
(like the ones mentioned below).

Explanations (and ERROR messages) FREQUENTLY repeated the equivalent of,  
"If you use *nix, you'll be able to figure this out. No need to explain  
it," or "Make like Sherlock Holmes, and look for clues."

Apparently, the developers of this stuff MAY be a lot wise-a**es who'd  
rather, really, have nobody else use their code.

Or, at least, they can't be bothered with meaningful documentation or  
installers that do the full job.


On Thu, 22 Jan 2009 06:01:46 -0600, Curtis Osterhoudt <cfo at> wrote:

> On Wednesday 21 January 2009 04:47:31 Sjoerd C. de Vries wrote:
> [...]
>> LaTeX had all kinds of problems. Figures never appeared where you
>> wanted them.
>    Thus the h! flag. Most of the GUI frontends to LaTeX now allow for  
> easy specification of where you want the figures, and the degree of  
> their "floatiness".
>> Quite often they ended up bunched together at the end of
>> a chapter. You needed a kludge like the here.sty style file. Using
>> different fonts was next to impossible. LaTeX2e that appeared later
>> improved that (so I have heard). However, years later, when I tried to
>> typeset my plain LaTeX based thesis once again, I couldn't get it to
>> compile with the then current 2e version. So much for compatibility.
>   This may still be a problem.
>> Equations of more than average complexity easily filled up half a page
>> of code rubbish and were a pain to debug.
>   No problem with, e.g., LyX and its "instant preview".
>> Spellchecking less than
>> basic. Try to write a multiple language peace and spellcheck that in
>> LaTeX.
>   This is no problem now.
>> Virtually no picture tools. No tracked changes. No
>> collaboration tools etc etc.
>    All of that is quite easy now.
>> I don't want to start a flame war. Just balancing the discussion
>> somewhat. I am well aware of many or most of the problems of Word.
>> Cheers -- Sjoerd
>   Points taken! All of the "desktop publishing" paradigms can *really*  
> be worked on.

DrMajorBob at

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