PDF (was publication of IASS papers on CDROM)

Dominik Wujastyk ucgadkw at UCL.AC.UK
Wed Dec 20 13:08:10 UTC 2000

On Tue, 19 Dec 2000, Brian Akers wrote:

> I agree. TeX is completely unsuited for a production environment (ordinary
> mortals struggling with deadlines).

This isn't really true.  TeX is the typesetting engine in the production
line for gargantuan publications like the USA's TVGuide.  Many typesetting
companies use TeX.  The public doesn't always get to know about it.  E.g.
Cambridge Univ. Press, OUP (through LaserWords), Institute of Physics
(through Focal Image), the American Math Society, Barkhuis (for Egbert
Forsten), and many others.  TeX has a very firm position in the
professional world of technical typesetting.

I'm afraid I think TeX is really easy, and completely usable by novices,
and doesn't require any programming at all for most normal academic
writing.  This is true if you use LaTeX commands and a nice editing
interface like Winedt and MikTeX under Windows, which has online help for
LaTeX, and makes everything very smooth and convenient.

TeX gets tricky if you try to do tricky things, like six layers of
independent footnotes coordinated to line numbers.  But then, you would
expect that.  And at least you can do this with TeX, which you can't with
most (any?) other tools.

On the other hand, I meet person after person who has had nightmare
experiences trying to write books with MS Word.

Sorry, this is a grossly off-list topic!  I'll stop.

Dominik Wujastyk
Founder, INDOLOGY list.

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