I get depressed because of LaTex

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  • Thread starter bres gres
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In summary: Large documents in MS Word are a nightmare, especially if you cut and paste from many other submitted sections that have different...
  • #1
bres gres
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physics Forums is a good place to ask physics questions
however i cannot ask any questions because i don't know how to use Latex
it seems i need lot of time to learn it...

:( :( :(
 
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  • #3
Most questions only need LaTex for math equations, and even those can often be done fairly clearly without LaTex. I don't think that being a beginner in LaTex should stop you.
 
  • #4
bres gres said:
physics Forums is a good place to ask physics questions
however i cannot ask any questions because i don't know how to use Latex
it seems i need lot of time to learn it...

:( :( :(
You can use our guideline
https://www.physicsforums.com/help/latexhelp/or what I did at the beginning: I "replied" to similar posts and used their formulas as template, i.e. I fetched the formulas by putting them into the edit box and then copied and pasted it into my real post in possibly another thread. Thanks to tab browsing. Of course one has to be careful not to hit the post button and answer them. And the automatic save function of the forums software keeps the text in the edit box, so it's still there when you come back.

I soon downloaded a tiny script program which allows me to define my own keyboard shortcuts.This saves a lot of typing. E.g. "\lim_{n \to \infty}" is all on one key, e.g. Ctrl + l. Similar with "\begin {bmatrix} \end {bmatrix}" or "\left. \dfrac{d}{d}\right|_{}"
 
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  • #5
fresh_42 said:
I soon downloaded a tiny script program which allows me to define my own keyboard shortcuts.This saves a lot of typing. E.g. "\lim_{n \to \infty}" is all on one key, e.g. Ctrl + l. Similar with "\begin {bmatrix} \end {bmatrix}" or "\left. \dfrac{d}{d}\right|_{}"
Better invest your time in learning how to type blindly. You can write latex without using any special key combinations.
 
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  • #6
DrDu said:
Better invest your time in learning how to type blindly. You can write latex without using any special key combinations.
Not really. I need AltGr far too often on my standard keyboard setting. I even overwrote the caps lock. And if you also write TeX files, the keyboard settings are of a great help. It's simply faster and less erroneous. One hit gives me {} or \left(\right). You cannot beat this.
 
  • #7
fresh_42 said:
I soon downloaded a tiny script program which allows me to define my own keyboard shortcuts.
Very cool. Which one did you download?
 
  • #8
I use AutoHotkey. It is very easy to set up and has pause functions (I didn't figure out what the difference between pause and suspend is ...), e.g. if you need the usual setting as Ctrl+D in excel. Right click on the symbol in the taskbar does this. Also edit the script while running is possible, so you can test new settings without leaving the script editor. And if you wrote
[Moderator's note: Moved from a technical forum and thus no template.]
for the 100th time, you appreciate this little helper!

Edit: Just don't overwrite Ctrl+C / V / X and possibly Alt+S.
 
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  • #9
DrDu said:
Better invest your time in learning how to type blindly. You can write latex without using any special key combinations.
This.

I don't do anything special, like using special editors or defining hot keys. The LaTeX commands I use most often are for fractions, limits, and integrals. These are easy enough, for me at least, that I don't mind just typing them in.
For longer, more complicated expressions, I use the Preview button to check that what I wrote got rendered correctly.
 
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  • #10
To write Latex parentheses I have to hit AtlGr+7 and AltGr+0. It's really more convenient to just hit Alt+B, or Atl+N in case I want to write them: \{\,\,\} This combination would be AltGr+? AltGr+7 AltGr+? , AltGr+? , AltGr+? AltGr+0 otherwise. Not really fun to type. Not to mention how often I would have to correct infinity to infty.

To be honest: part of the problem was that I lost keys on my previous machine due to rubber marks, and my attempts to disassemble the keyboard where not very promising. Hence I downloaded the program to have an alternative for "e" which lost functionality. The rest came in quite natural. And \left. \dfrac{d}{d}\right|_{} is really far better behind a single key than to forget the left. part over and over again.

Modern times. Why not make use of it?
 
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  • #11
I would get depressed if I had to format my theses in Word or some MS Office equivalent.
 
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  • #12
nuuskur said:
I would get depressed if I had to format my theses in Word or some MS Office equivalent.
Large documents in MS Word are a nightmare, especially if you cut and paste from many other submitted sections that have different formats.
 
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  • #13
bres gres said:
physics Forums is a good place to ask physics questions
however i cannot ask any questions because i don't know how to use Latex
it seems i need lot of time to learn it...

:( :( :(

If this simple, relatively trivial task is already getting you "depressed", then you have bigger issues to deal with than just having to use LaTex on PF.

Zz.
 
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  • #14
Just learn the often-occurring bits at a time.
From one of your posts: "εijk A0jk=ε0jki A0jk ", use '^' for an exponent and inclose multiple charactors inside {}.
The entire LaTex equation should be enclosed by double '#'s at each end.
##\epsilon^{ijk} A_{0jk} = \epsilon^{0jk} A_{0jk}## is from
Code:
##\epsilon^{ijk} A_{0jk} = \epsilon^{0jk} A_{0jk}##
Also, Google is your friend. I am constantly Googling specific LaTex things like the LaTex epsilon symbol until I learn them.
 
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  • #15
FactChecker said:
Also, Google is your friend. I am constantly Googling specific LaTex things like the LaTex epsilon symbol until I learn them.
Here's a convenient list:
http://detexify.kirelabs.org/symbols.htmlbut not all LaTeX libraries are available in MathJax what is what we really use.

The most important advantage over MS-word is the automatic administration of footnotes, cross-references, section numbering, table of content, sources etc. in "real" scientific documents. The disadvantage is, that it is basically a programming language and therefore less intuitive.
 
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  • #16
Why not load TeXstudio on your machine and start with a template document. Use it to hash out the expressions you want to type into this site, it's a way to learn how to use it and sure, it takes time, but you are also learing how to use LaTeX ina dual fashion. When you see the key strokes in text on a page enough, you'll start remembering them and be able to use this site more effectively without going back and forth. I'm better than most, maybe pushing expert-ish, and I still go back and forth on occasion to check on a complicated expression.
 
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  • #17
First of all, I'm going to say that it's well worth learning LaTeX. Having equations formatted in proper mathematical notation makes life easier for both the writer to express themselves and the reader to understand. It just adds so much beauty to the discussion and it really makes reading this site a pleasure.

BUT... (cue ominous music)
fresh_42 said:
The disadvantage is, that it is basically a programming language and therefore less intuitive.

I have to say that's true. When building up a complicated equation, more often than not I'll break the interpreter, meaning I just see garble or see my codes displayed verbatim, no math. And then I go into the same debug mode I use for programming, attempting to build it up little by little until I find the bit of code that is breaking things. Then trying to analyze the bug and figure out the fix, a process that often involves Googling and reading a StackExchange discussion (which is also a place I end up pretty often when programming).

But it is worth it. When that expression is built and looks as I intended, it's such a pleasure!

My suggestion is to feel completely free to ask for advice on formatting when your LaTeX doesn't work. And here in the LaTeX forum is the place to ask. Do start with consulting the tutorial and trying to build your expression, because we like it here when people put effort into an attempted solution, no matter how successful it is or isn't. But then don't worry that you might be asking elementary questions. It (along with trying yourself) is really the only way to learn.
 
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  • #18
bres gres said:
physics Forums is a good place to ask physics questions
however i cannot ask any questions because i don't know how to use Latex
it seems i need lot of time to learn it...

:( :( :(
Please consider how difficult it would be to write mathematical expressions without ##\LaTeX## or ##\TeX## 🤔, and then please have a look at https://ctan.org/starter, which leads to a wealth of relevant learning resources.
 
  • #19
I don't get tripped up over LaTex syntax itself - there's cheat sheets that cover that - what trips me up is the various tags different sites use to display it. That's not listed anywhere.

I think PF's format is ... [ TEX ][ /TEX ]?
 
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  • #20
DaveC426913 said:
I don't get tripped up over LaTex syntax itself - there's cheat sheets that cover that - what trips me up is the various tags different sites use to display it. That's not listed anywhere.

I think PF's format is ... [ TEX ][ /TEX ]?
Here on PF the LaTeX guide (link in lower left corner) says to use as opening and closing delimiters ## for inline and $$ for paragraph; however, the bbcodes [ itex][ /itex] and [ tex][ /tex] will also work.
 
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  • #21
You could use the latex editor https://www.codecogs.com/latex/eqneditor.php then copy the code to the forum placing it between a pair of ## for same line display or a pair of $$ for separate line presentation. In the process you also learn LaTex.
 
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  • #22
It's also worth learning some basic LaTeX because the notation is commonly used in applications. For example, on my Mac, iPad, and iPhone, the Numbers, Pages, and Keynote applications all support entering equations using LaTeX notation. MathType does as well. I seem to recall Google Docs does too.
 
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  • #23
@bres gres ##\LaTeX## is worth learning; you will be heavily relying on it later. I submitted two long projects last month in college. Without ##\LaTeX##, typesetting would have been impossible.

I have an account at Overleaf. It will help you to try out ##\LaTeX## codes easily without having to install anything. That's where I type long threads first, before posting in PF. For longer articles, you should install ##\LaTeX## locally.
 
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  • #24
fresh_42 said:
I use AutoHotkey. It is very easy to set up ...
And if you wrote
[Moderator's note: Moved from a technical forum and thus no template.]
for the 100th time, you appreciate this little helper!
fresh_42 said:
To write Latex parentheses I have to hit AtlGr+7 and AltGr+0
...
Modern times. Why not make use of it?
Nifty stuff ! Looked around in autohotkey.com, and -- lazy bugger that I am -- wondered if there is a generally accepted and used 'best way of using AHK for ##\LaTeX## in Mathjax on PF'. Perferably plug&play, or in a concise startup script.
I was used to DIY everything to get something 'better than anybody elses stuff', but gathered some modesty-improving experience in 40 years of computering :wink: .

But as a homework helper I sure want a hot key for e.g. 'Read the ####\daggers\stars\bombs\fireworks\skulls## ## PF Guidelines' too :biggrin: !

In the mean time I made a shortcut for
gleem said:
You could use the latex editor https://www.codecogs.com/latex/eqneditor.php
but I expect AHK to provide even more comfort and time savings :rolleyes:
 
  • #25
vela said:
on my Mac, iPad, and iPhone, the Numbers, Pages, and Keynote applications all support entering equations using LaTeX notation.
That's new to me! Just tried it on my iPhone. First time I'd ever tried using Pages; never felt any urge to, after using Word (with MathType) for many years.
 
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  • #26
jtbell said:
never felt any urge to, after using Word (with MathType) for many years.
Apparently MSFT Word, at least in Office 2016, now supports entering math equations and expressions in LaTeX.
 
  • #27
Mark44 said:
Apparently MSFT Word, at least in Office 2016, now supports entering math equations and expressions in LaTeX.
I wonder if that's true in the Mac OS version, too... in the past, it's often lagged behind the Windows version. I'm still using Office 2011 because my Mac is so old (2008 :))). Sometime Real Soon Now I'm going to treat myself to a nice new iMac and refresh all my software. Then I'll find out what the current version of Word is like.
 
  • #28
jtbell said:
I wonder if that's true in the Mac OS version, too... in the past, it's often lagged behind the Windows version.
It doesn't seem to be. I have an Office 365 subscription through my school, so I should have the latest versions of the applications. I found the feature in the Windows versions, but I couldn't find it in the Mac versions.
 
  • #29
  • #30
gleem said:
I had previously pointed to a LaTex editor app and copying the code. You can also just copy the image to your document with https://www.codecogs.com/latex/eqneditor.php if your document sw does not support LaTex.
Don't give them ideas! I see hundreds of homework threads with even more unquotable pictures! Not to mention the waste of server space.
 
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  • #31
Be careful about copying images into MS-Word. ALL images are converted to a medium resolution .JPEG format... definitely NOT publication quality.

I ran across this several years ago when I was proofing a book for the author. For instance, many screen captures were unreadable. :cry: The author gave up on MS-Word and converted the manuscript to a different editor (don't recall which one for sure, but we ended up transferring files in .PDF format).

Cheers,
Tom
 
  • #32
Tom.G said:
Be careful about copying images into MS-Word. ALL images are converted to a medium resolution .JPEG format... definitely NOT publication quality.
This is not true. If you import a PNG, it stays as a PNG. And you can select the quality in File -> Options -> Advanced -> Image Size and Quality: you can select "do not compress" if you want, although I have found "High Fidelity" is good enough in practice, even for professional printing. To view on screen 96dpi is enough (the lowest available setting).

Tom.G said:
I ran across this several years ago when I was proofing a book for the author.
Must have been a long time ago, at least before Office 2007. Or the settings were wrong, or perhaps the wrong settings had been chosen when printing to PDF?
 
  • #33
It could well have been settings made by the author. I don't know which software versions were used but the book copyright date is 2014, so software versions between 2010 to 2013 would be likely.

I agree 96dpi for a display screen is adequate; however rule-of-thumb for color images on good quality paper is 300dpi. Black and White on paper needs 600dpi. These are the recommendations from the publishers/printers and reflect the visually discernable resolution for 'young eyes.'

Cheers,
Tom
 
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  • #34
Want to be a Physicist? Learn LaTeX. It is the language.
 
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  • #35
What is going on here? Why did that bold text appear? Why did my attempt at saying "build a vertical vector ##[ b ]##" give me so much aggravation? Is this going to go on for ever? Not for ever.

Part of the issue with LaTeX is that this place implements more than LaTeX. If you put [ b ] but don't leave blanks, that turns on bold. Then [ /b ] turns it off again. This can screw up equations as well. Using [ i ] does the same for italics. [ u ] does underlines. [ s ] does strikethrough.
 
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