# [OS X TeX] rotating vs landscape in two-sided documents

Alain Schremmer Schremmer.Alain at gmail.com
Sun Feb 11 16:41:33 EST 2007

```Bruno Voisin wrote:

> Le 11 févr. 07 à 18:38, Chabot Denis a écrit :
>
>> Well, thanks to the help of many people here, my report is almost
>> complete and I am very happy with the result, although I hope future
>> reports will allow me to concentrate on content and not on
>> formatting, one advantage of using LaTeX that was not achieved for
>> this particular document...
>
>
> That is an advantage I have never seen achieved in practice. LaTeX is
> so insistent on imposing a specific formatting, and it may be so
> inconvenient to use at times (think for example of having to combine
> longtable, multline, array and \multicolumn in order to write a midly
> complicated table), that in my experience using LaTeX means spending
> more time formatting and less time writing.
>
> More specifically, LaTeX is nice when you are using a dedicated
> package yielding exactly the desired formatting (for example a
> journal-specific class), and/or when you document contains a lot of
> maths.
>
> But when you want to write a memo or report, say, and the standard
> article, report or book classes do not meet your needs exactly, then
> you'll spend an awful lot of time interrupting your workflow to deal
> with some formatting issues, look for some style to accomplish a
> specific task, search a FAQ, post to a mailing list, and so forth.

Indeed, indeed, particularly when you are like me and you don't quite
know what you are doing.

> In those cases I find it more efficient and stress-free to use a
> WYSIWYG word processor (Pages in my case). The output will possibly be
> less typographically correct, but it will be achieved more easily, and
> it will be possible to devote more attention to the matter at hand
> without having constantly to interrupt the thinking for dealing with
> some formatting issue; it will also be easier to start writing the
> document without having a clear idea of its content or presentation,
> and then reorganize matter, move things around, add columns in table,
> switch columns, and so forth.

How about Lyx? I gave it a try early on, didn't like it and then didn't
want to switch. Still …

>
> I know this is probably a controversial issue on an OS X TeX list, but
> in my opinion (from 15 years or so of intensive TeX use), however
> convenient it may be for maths writing or for using a predefined
> style, LaTeX has failed spectacularly in its aim to allow users to
> concentrate on writing and free them from formatting.

On the other hand, the difficult search for the perfect visual rendering
of one's text can force one to re-evaluate one's ideas. It happened to
me a few times. On the whole, though, I agree.

Regards
--schremmer