Book Image

LaTeX Beginner's Guide

Book Image

LaTeX Beginner's Guide

Overview of this book

LaTeX is high-quality Open Source typesetting software that produces professional prints and PDF files. However, as LaTeX is a powerful and complex tool, getting started can be intimidating. There is no official support and certain aspects such as layout modifications can seem rather complicated. It may seem more straightforward to use Word or other WYSIWG programs, but once you've become acquainted, LaTeX's capabilities far outweigh any initial difficulties. This book guides you through these challenges and makes beginning with LaTeX easy. If you are writing Mathematical, Scientific, or Business papers, or have a thesis to write, then this is the perfect book for you. LaTeX Beginner's Guide offers you a practical introduction to LaTeX with plenty of step-by-step examples. Beginning with the installation and basic usage, you will learn to typeset documents containing tables, figures, formulas, and common book elements like bibliographies, glossaries, and indexes and go on to managing complex documents and using modern PDF features. It's easy to use LaTeX, when you have LaTeX Beginner's Guide to hand. This practical book will guide you through the essential steps of LaTeX, from installing LaTeX, formatting, and justification to page design. Right from the beginning, you will learn to use macros and styles to maintain a consistent document structure while saving typing work. You will learn to fine-tune text and page layout, create professional looking tables as well as include figures and write complex mathematical formulas. You will see how to generate bibliographies and indexes with ease. Finally you will learn how to manage complex documents and how to benefit from modern PDF features. Detailed information about online resources like software archives, web forums, and online compilers completes this introductory guide. It's easy to use LaTeX, when you have LaTeX Beginner's Guide to hand.
Table of Contents (21 chapters)
LaTeX
Credits
About the Author
About the Reviewers
www.PacktPub.com
Preface
2
Formatting Words, Lines, and Paragraphs
Index

Preface

LaTeX is a high-quality open source typesetting software that produces professional prints and PDF files. However, as LaTeX is a powerful and complex tool, getting started can be intimidating. There is no official support and certain aspects such as layout modifications can seem rather complicated. It may seem more straightforward to use Word or other WYSIWG programs, but once you've become acquainted, LaTeX's capabilities far outweigh any initial difficulties. This book guides you through these challenges and makes beginning with LaTeX easy. If you are writing mathematical, scientific, or business papers, then this is the perfect book for you.

LaTeX Beginner's Guide offers you a practical introduction to LaTeX. Beginning with the installation and basic usage, you will learn to typeset documents containing tables, figures, formulas, and common book elements like bibliographies, glossaries, and indexes. Lots of step-by-step examples start with fine-tuning text, formulas and page layout and go on to managing complex documents and using modern PDF features. It's easy to use LaTeX, when you have LaTeX Beginner's Guide at hand.

This practical book will guide you through the essential steps of Latex, from installing LaTeX, formatting, and justification, to page design. Finally, you will learn how to manage complex documents and how to benefit from modern PDF features. Right from the beginning, you will learn to use macros and styles to maintain a consistent document structure while saving typing work. This book will help you learn to create professional looking tables as well as include figures and write complex mathematic formulas. You will see how to generate bibliographies and indexes with ease. Detailed information about online resources like software archives, web forums, and online compilers complement this introductory guide.

What this book covers

Chapter 1, Getting Started with LaTeX, introduces LaTeX and explains its benefits. It guides you through the download and installation of a comprehensive LaTeX distribution and shows you how to create your first LaTeX document.

Chapter 2, Formatting Words, Lines, and Paragraphs, explains how to vary font, shape, and style of text. It deals with centering and justification of paragraphs and how you can improve line breaks and hyphenation. It introduces the concept of logical formatting and teaches you how to define macros and how to use environments and packages.

Chapter 3, Designing Pages, shows how you can adjust the margins and change the line spacing. It demonstrates portrait, landscape, and two-column layout. In this chapter, we will create dynamic headers and footers and learn how to control page breaking and how to use footnotes. Along the way, you will also learn about redefining existing commands and using class options. Furthermore, you will get familiar with accessing package documentation.

Chapter 4, Creating Lists, deals with arranging text in bulleted, numbered, and definition lists. We will learn how to choose bullets and numbering style and how to design the overall layout of lists.

Chapter 5, Creating Tables and Inserting Pictures, shows you how to create professional-looking tables and how to include external pictures in your documents. It deals with typesetting captions to tables and figures. We will learn how to benefit from LaTeX's automated tables and figures placement and how to fine-tune it.

Chapter 6, Cross-Referencing, introduces means of intelligent referencing to sections, footnotes, tables, figures, and numbered environments in general.

Chapter 7, Listing Content and References, deals with creating and customizing of a table of contents and lists of figures and tables. Furthermore, it teaches how to cite books, how to create bibliographies, and how to generate an index.

Chapter 8, Typing Math Formulas, explains mathematical typesetting in depth. It starts with basic formulas and continues with centered and numbered equations. It shows how to align multi-line equations. In detail, it shows how to typeset math symbols such as roots, arrows, Greek letters, and operators. Moreover, you will learn how to build complex math structures such as fractions, stacked expressions, and matrices.

Chapter 9, Using Fonts, takes us into the world of fonts and demonstrates various fonts for Roman, sans-serif, and typewriter fonts in different shapes. By the way, you will learn about character encoding and font encoding.

Chapter 10, Developing Large Documents, helps in managing large documents by splitting them into several files. It shows how to swap out settings, how to reuse code, and how to compile just parts of a bigger documents. After reading this chapter, you will be able to create complex projects building upon sub-files. Furthermore, we deal with front matter and back matter with different page numbering and separate title pages. We will work it out by creating an example book. By doing this, you will get familiar with using document templates, finally being able to write our own thesis, book, or report.

Chapter 11, Enhancing Your Documents Further, brings color into your documents. It shows you how to modify headings of chapters and all kinds of sections. We will learn how to create feature-rich PDF documents with bookmarks, hyperlinks, and meta-data. While doing this, we visit the TeX Catalogue Online to look out for further useful LaTeX packages and we will go through a package installation.

Chapter 12, Troubleshooting, provides us with tools for problem-solving. We will learn about different kinds of LaTeX's errors and warnings and how to deal with them. After reading this chapter, you will understand LaTeX's messages and you will know how to use them for fixing errors.

Chapter 13, Using Online Resources, guides you through the vast amount of LaTeX information on the Internet. We will visit a LaTeX online forum and a LaTeX Question & Answer site. This chapter points the way to huge LaTeX software archives, to homepages of TeX user groups, to mailing lists, Usenet groups, and LaTeX blogs. It tells you where you can download LaTeX capable editors and where you can find enhanced versions of TeX, such as XeTeX, LuaTeX, and ConTeXt. Finally, you will know how to access the knowledge of the world-wide LaTeX community and how to become a part of it.

What you need for this book

You need access to a computer with LaTeX on it. An online connection would be helpful regarding installation and updates. LaTeX can be installed on most operating systems, so you can use Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, or Unix.

This book uses the freely available TeX Live distribution, which runs on all mentioned platforms. You just need an online connection or the TeX Live DVD to install it. In the book, we work with the cross-platform editor TeXworks, but you could use any editor you like.

Who this book is for

If you are about to write mathematical or scientific papers, seminar handouts, or even plan to write a thesis, then this book offers you a fast-paced and practical introduction. Particularly when studying in school and university you will benefit a lot, as a mathematician and a physicist as well as an engineer or a humanist. Everybody with high expectations who plans to write a paper or a book may be delighted by this stable software.

Conventions

In this book, you will find several headings appearing frequently. To give clear instructions of how to complete a procedure or task, we use:

Time for action - heading

  1. Action 1

  2. Action 2

  3. Action 3

Instructions often need some extra explanation so that they make sense, so they are followed with:

What just happened?

This heading explains the working of tasks or instructions that you have just completed.

You will also find some other learning aids in the book, including:

Pop quiz

These are short multiple choice questions intended to help you test your own understanding.

Have a go hero - heading

These set practical challenges and give you ideas for experimenting with what you have learned.

You will also find a number of styles of text that distinguish between different kinds of information. Here are some examples of these styles, and an explanation of their meaning.

Code words in text are shown as follows: "The command \chapter produced a large heading. This command will always begin on a new page."

A block of code is set as follows:

\documentclass[a4paper,12pt]{book}
\usepackage[english]{babel}
\usepackage{blindtext}
\begin{document}
\chapter{Exploring the page layout}
In this chapter we will study the layout of pages.
\section{Some filler text}
\blindtext
\section{A lot more filler text}
More dummy text will follow.
\subsection{Plenty of filler text}
\blindtext[10]
\end{document}

When we wish to draw your attention to a particular part of a code block, the relevant lines or items are set in bold:

\documentclass[a4paper,11pt]{book}
\usepackage[english]{babel}
\usepackage{blindtext}
\usepackage[a4paper, inner=1.5cm, outer=3cm, top=2cm,
bottom=3cm, bindingoffset=1cm]{geometry}
\begin{document}
\chapter{Exploring the page layout}
In this chapter we will study the layout of pages.
\section{Some filler text}
\blindtext
\section{A lot more filler text}
More dummy text will follow.
\subsection{Plenty of filler text}
\blindtext[3]
\end{document}

Any command-line input or output is written as follows:

texdoc geometry

New terms and important words are shown in bold. Words that you see on the screen, in menus or dialog boxes for example, appear in the text like this: "Save the document and Typeset it."

Note

Warnings or important notes appear in a box like this.

Tip

Tips and tricks appear like this.

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