[OS X TeX] Who should use (La)TeX - who is able to use it?

Alain Schremmer Schremmer.Alain at verizon.net
Tue Nov 16 19:57:47 EST 2004

Another Ah Ha!
You have given me food for thought with the copy paste issue.
I "am sure" that it can be circumvented. Roughly, I think, it is a 
matter of specifying how much automation to choose and, therefore, how 
much freedom to lose. But I think that here, losing freedom would not be 
a big issue as long as the "regular TeXshop would still be around. But I 
have to think about it a lot more.

Question, though:
Is this the right place to discuss this kind of things?
If it is, at least a new thread ought to be necessary.


Chris Goedde wrote:

>>(4) It seems to me that a version of, say TeXshop, complete with the 
>>packages necessary for, say, Calculus I and II, and a "G-installer" and 
>>with a Word like interface would be a winner. OK, so the output may not 
>>be optimal, OK, so there would be a lot of mathematics, beginning with 
>>matrices that couldn't be written etc. So what? Anyone wanting to do 
>>that sort of things would then turn to the regular TeXshop. But, I have 
>>noticed already on this list a number of people who do not seem to be 
>>concerned with mathematical typography anyway.
>While I think it would be possible to make the sort of GUI
>front end you are advocating, I don't think it would be as
>simple or as useful as you think.  TeX very clearly
>separates content from formatting.  In a typical GUI, the
>separation between these two is much less clear. This has
>important consequences for usability.
>An example.  You have two documents, one set in Lucida, one
>in Computer Modern.  You copy and paste a paragraph from the
>first into the second.  What font should it appear in?  In
>TeX, the answer is obvious.  Unless the formatting is
>explicitly included, the text will appear in Computer
>Modern.  In a GUI, the answer is not so obvious.  (In fact,
>Word does the opposite---the formatting is copied along with
>the text.)  Now extend this to all the other possible
>formattings:  font size, margins, indentation, linespacing,
>inter-paragraph spacing, etc. Either your GUI will behave
>very differently from standard word processors, or it's behavior
>will be very different from a typical TeX document, and it's
>TeX output will strike many people as very strange.
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