When you are writing a dissertation and start planning to write 5 chapters, chapter 5 has been typeset, then your instructor suddenly tells you to add a chapter in "mathematics background" in front of chapter 2, what do you do? Obviously you need to manually change Chapter 5 to Chapter 6 in Word typesetting. All the mathematical formula numbers must be changed. How much work like this? When you finally get it done, your mentor also said that it might be better to merge Chapter 2 and Chapter 3. Do you think your head is big at this time?
In the same chapter, you spent several days arranging all the pictures in this chapter. Your instructor said that the previous description is not enough, and no more than half a page. Maybe because of this sentence, you have to work a few days.
Word is very useful as a tool for clerks, but it is not suitable for typesetting by specialized personnel. The effect of its mathematical formula is too far from the standard publication grade. Those with Word experience know that their mathematical formulas are actually done in the form of embedded objects. No formula is an embedded object. Suppose your instructor asks you to change t to t in the full text. If you don't replace it manually one by one, can you have other ways to achieve it? LaTeX does not have this problem. This article is about to make a brief introduction and comparison of this special typesetting system.
Introduction to LaTeX typesetting system
The LaTeX language was developed by the American scholar Professor Knuth, and it was well received immediately after it started running in 1980. In addition, there was no software like Microsoft Word at that time, so it became popular in academia. At that time, there may not be corresponding good software with it, so it was called the best typesetting tool in the scientific community. However, today it seems that its function is much higher than the so-called "what you see is what you get" typesetting software like Word. Its cross-reference, floating graphics, mathematical formula layout and other functions are particularly prominent. It is currently a popular Chinese and English typesetting software, which is especially suitable for the production of scientific and technological articles and books, and for scientific and technical personnel, they can generate almost the same works as printed products on computers.
LaTeX is actually TeX macro commands. These macro commands can systematically complex various mathematical formulas. Many mathematical symbols, such as the size of superscript and subscripts, are automatically made by the system, which brings great convenience to LaTeX users. Instead of designing the specific format and printing requirements of the article, users can generate high-quality works by providing these determined macro commands in accordance with regulations. Mathematicians and theoretical physicists often encounter extremely complex mathematical formulas. Typing these formulas is not only complicated for ordinary typists, but also not easy for scientific and technical personnel. The macro commands provided by LaTeX software can easily systemize various complex formulas, which simplifies the printing of complex mathematical formulas. Anyone who has seen the manuscript produced by LaTeX will be very satisfied with the quality of its text. Compared with current general-purpose Western word processing software such as Word and WPS, it is superior in character quality, typesetting functions, and typographical printing of mathematical formulas.
LaTeX software is a Descriptive Markup System. It is not a visual markup system. You cannot directly see the output result. You need to add a description statement to the ordinary file to describe the format of the output. The narrative marking system can automatically convert the form of mathematical formulas. Its source files are written in ASCII code, which has good portability and can be transmitted between different computers by electronic mail (E-mail). Descriptive sentences in narrative marking systems are also different from professionally printed terms, but instead replace those highly specialized terms with the simplest descriptions. For example, although the visual marking system is simple, in printing some complex mathematical formulas, the author must adjust the character size, position, etc. This requires the author to have extremely rich experience in printing and typesetting. For ordinary people, this is almost impossible. Although many domestic Chinese character software has been widely welcomed, readers will find that the mathematical formulas printed by LaTeX are compared with the mathematical formulas printed by other Chinese and English typographic software (such as Keyin and Huaguang). s difference. The Chinese and English articles printed by LaTeX are almost the same as formal publications. This is why some publishers use LaTeX to publish magazines and books directly in recent years.
In foreign countries, LaTeX software has been widely used to produce scientific articles, books, archives, dissertations, manuscripts and personal letters, various complex symbolic formulas, foreign languages (letters other than English, such as French, German, Italian, Greek, Russian, etc.), table of contents, references, indexes, footnotes, etc. It enables rapid publication and generates high-quality scientific and technological works to exchange scientific and technological information. In addition, some publishing departments directly accept articles written on disk and then perform laser phototypesetting to shorten the publication cycle of articles. For example, many domestic magazines such as "Computational Mathematics" and "Journal of Applied Mathematics" require authors to provide LaTeX source files. Special attention should be paid to the use of LaTeX software for publishing when authors submit to foreign publishers. This is because the use of LaTeX can easily complete the typesetting work of high-quality scientific and technological literature, and can be expanded and modified according to the requirements of the author. Therefore, it has gradually attracted the attention of the publishing community and scientific and technological workers in various countries, and is considered to be the current international typesetting. The most powerful system of mathematical formulas, and has been designated as a standard thesis editing software at various international conferences.