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What program to use to type math paper?

  1. Jul 9, 2011 #1
    I have a paper to write for linear algebra, and it has some mathematical notation, (sums, matrices, things like that). I was wondering what program I might use to type it so it looks pretty like a math test. Always wondered how they did that... I have access to an assortment of programs via the university, I just don't know which one is the one I should spend my Saturday learning to use.
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  3. Jul 9, 2011 #2


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    I prefer "Word Perfect" which has a "math-formula" mode. However, I believe that "Word for Windows" has essentially the same thing.
  4. Jul 9, 2011 #3
    Who knew? I looked at word but all I did was try putting symbols in the old-fashioned way and that didn't cut it. Thanks for tip!

    Hmm... so I have Word 2003, I don't think it can do what I want. :( Other suggestions?
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2011
  5. Jul 9, 2011 #4

    Ray Vickson

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    Try LyX (freely downloadable from the LyX website). It is almost like LaTeX, except it is more like Word in usage, so you don't need to learn a lot of fancy symbols---just choose symbols from a pallette. It essentially produces a LaTeX file as output, so you get publication-quality results immediately. The LyX website has a menu item called "features". Click on that, then click on "demo clip" to watch it in action.

  6. Jul 9, 2011 #5


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    I did not know about "Lyx"!

    However, I think that to use "Word's" equation editor, you have cllick on "insert" on the tool bar, then look for "equation editor" on the drop down list. In "Word Perfect", you can use the "customize" menu item (under "tools") to drop an "equation editor" icon on the tool bar.
  7. Jul 9, 2011 #6
    Good idea, thanks :)
  8. Jul 9, 2011 #7


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    That is interesting. I tried to use WordPerfect for mathematics way back in the day when they just introduced math mode and there wasn't any Microsoft Word math mode or maybe even Word itself. This was so far back that they even had excellent free telephone customer support. It was a nightmare. I was sending them files so they could try to replicate the various bugs so they could fix them. It was a long document and I never did get it to work without it crashing my computer. I finally bit the bullet and figured out how to put TeX on my computer and that wasn't easy either. No MikTeX, just a blizzard of batch files and configuation files. It took me a couple of days to even figure out how to get it properly installed.

    How times change. It's easier now. I had forgotten all about WordPerfect. Apparently they have it working now, eh?
  9. Jul 9, 2011 #8
    I messed around with a couple different things, couldn't get the LaTex app from the university to run, and happened across instructions on how to get the equation editor installed in Word. Did that, project all typed. My, it's pretty :) It was tedious though.
  10. Jul 9, 2011 #9
    google docs has a formula editor. I use it for all my university papers and such, because it's nice to be able to write from any web browser and not worry about keeping the file with me in my email or on a flash drive.
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