[OS X TeX] fragmaster, dvips and pdflatex problem

Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com
Mon Jul 3 12:01:23 EDT 2006

Hi Ross,

Le 2 juil. 06 à 07:19, Ross Moore a écrit :

>> Publishers generally require figure files to work as stand-alone  
>> files,
> That depends on the kind of publication that you are providing
> material for ...
>> not requiring interaction with any external software (here TeX and  
>> psfrag) or file (here the .tex input file)
>  ... and the kind of material being provided, which then determines
> what kind of editing still needs to be done by the publisher
> (via a pre-Press house, say).
> In my experience, with several monographs and Proceedings volumes,
> the modern equivalent of "camera-ready copy" is a completely
> self-contained PDF. You certainly don't want the images separately
> in this case.

Then that really seems to depend on the publisher. Those that I know  
(not many, admittedly) ask for separate image files, in either EPS,  
TIFF or PNG format, and prohibit PDF explicitly. Not long ago, they  
were still asking for hardcopy of each image.

> [...]
> It's easy to put together a simple LaTeX document that
> includes just the psfrag-annotated images, each on a page
> by itself, just as you can with WaRMreader-annotated
> graphics. Then convert the .ps to .pdf in the usual way.
> Indeed, when done this way, you can use  pdfcrop
> to crop each page to the ideal size for its contents.
> Finally, use  pdfpages to insert these annotated graphics
> at the end of a new PDF containing the full paper + graphics.
> Maybe I just don't understand what is your point here.

Yes, I agree you can do this. That's just too convoluted for my  
taste: I prefer to minimize the number of conversions from one format  
to another (here EPS -> PS -> PDF -> PDF -> EPS), and in particular  
to avoid pdfcrop when possible. I also prefer to avoid having the  
image files to depend on an external (LaTeX) file: I prefer to have  
stand-alone image files that can be freely moved from one paper  
project to another, edited in a drawing application, without  
requiring a separate LaTeX file to be kept alongside them.

Trying to be more explicit: recently I've prepared a Keynote  
presentation, based in part on another former Keynote presentation.  
It included equations, pasted as PDF images prepared in LaTeXiT.  
Copying the equations from Keynote into LaTeXiT revealed miraculously  
the LaTeX input for the equations, which had been preserved when  
pasting them into Keynote (thanks to the way LaTeXiT work, no doubt).  
This input could be modified, the equation re-typeset then pasted  
back into Keynote. Very cool and efficient! It spared me a lot of  
stress, at a time I thought I would have to recreate (or explore lots  
of LaTeX files to locate) the original LaTeX code for the equations.

Having that for images would be cool indeed: imagine an Illustrator  
file, containing equations (for example axis labels) as pasted PDF  
images prepared in LaTeXiT. Copy the equations, paste them in  
LaTeXiT, modify them, paste them back in the Illustrator file. Again,  
cool, efficient and stress-free.

With LinkBack that's even cooler, but it's not yet available for  
Keynote 3 and I doubt whether Illustrator would recognize LinkBack.

> [...]
> Are you saying that the TeX processing can break up
> longer words that are intended as tags? With which
> version of psfrag macros can this happen?

Yes, last time I tried TeX broke up each tag into individual letters  
separated by PostScript instructions. That was years ago, and I  
haven't tried again since, declaring psfrag a flawed concept then.

> [...]
> To my way of thinking,  psfrag  doesn't give you the proper
> control over the size and placement of labels, while retaining
> full flexibility over scaling of the graphic itself, to suit
> the context in which it will appear.
> With psfrag  if you need to scale the graphic, then you will
> scale the labels as well, so that the fonts are no longer
> at the same size(s) as what is used in the surrounding material.
> To me, that's poor aesthetics.
> The only way to fix it is to rescale the picture itself,
> before saving as .eps .  Then the positioning of the label
> may not look so gaod anymore, so it's back to the image for
> more editing --- this time the position of the label(s).
> To me, this is a poor model for the work-flow.
> Note that pre-typesetting the labels then inserting them
> within the graphic itself, is also prone to these issues.
> (Think LaTeXiT and the old Textures+Illustrator way.)
> If you are very careful about the exact sizing of your
> graphics, upon creation, then this may not be important.
> Frequently you may not have such control.
> With WaRMreader, you construct the (unlabelled) graphics once,
> then add the labels later, using LaTeX.  This way you can make
> all final aesthetic adjustments from within the LaTeX source,
> employing the Preview to judge how well it all looks. (Best
> to work with 1 image at a time, until you are fully satisfied;
> then put it into the full document.)
> This way you don't have to revisit the graphic-producing
> software, unless you are unhappy with some of the non-label
> elements, of course. (Think about the cases where you have
> paid a Graphic Artist for their work, or a Matlab/Mathematica
> graphic where you no longer have the source to reproduce it.)
> Furthermore, the same graphic can be re-used in different
> ways, with and w/o labels, without need for extra editing.
> Also, the graphics are not constrained to being in .eps format.

You have of course a number of valid points. I'm sorry I won't have  
time to answer in detail. It's probably down to the way we work: I  
prefer a figure file to contain all within itself, even if that means  
re-sizing or modifying the labels every time the file is used, rather  
than requiring a separate LaTeX file to produce the labels.

Bruno------------------------- Info --------------------------
Mac-TeX Website: http://www.esm.psu.edu/mac-tex/
          & FAQ: http://latex.yauh.de/faq/
TeX FAQ: http://www.tex.ac.uk/faq
List Archive: http://tug.org/pipermail/macostex-archives/

More information about the MacOSX-TeX mailing list