[OS X TeX] Some beginner questions

Ferguson, Don fergdc at uleth.ca
Thu May 6 20:59:01 EDT 2010

Greetings All,

I'm new to both Mac OS X and to the MacTeX installation. So please bear with these initial questions.

I've installed the stuff that downloads with MacTeX 2009 and it seems to be working well. I'm using TeXShop to create source (.tex) files. The template I use is based on the «LaTex template» one that is listed under the «Templates» button.

I have modified this template here and there, based on stuff from George Grätzer's book; for example, adding


in the preamble, and other things.

Documentclass specification:
I've changed the \documentclass line to


and although there is no complaint about «amsbook» I'm just guessing that there is such a document class. Seems to be the case because in the .log file there was a warning about «draft» and «\includegraphics» having some sort of conflict. Eventually the draft will be deleted, and, at this time, I'm not using the
thing at this point.

The Address lines:
I wanted the author's address set up as three lines, so the source reads:

\address{first line\\
         second line\\
         email address}

But when typeset, everthing is in uppercase including «email address» and the address is presented on a single line. Why are the newlines ignored? Is it possible to specify a mix of uppercase and lowercase? Does \verbatim come in use here?

The Date line:
Under the address, the date was specified, but it never appears on the title page. Does not matter whether I use



\date{6 April 2010}

in either case, no date appears???

The guillemets guys
I like to use these « and » guys, but when the relevant codes

\guillemotleft   and   \guillemotright

were employed, the .log file complained about T1 encoding. Following Tobias Oetiker, I put


in the preamble. The « and » guys now appear. Is that the proper solution?

Wide Bar Over
If A and B represent points, then in geometry one often uses something akin to

   _A B_

except that the underline should be an overline (overbar). Although \bar{...} works well in the case of a single character, i.e., \bar{A}; it is inadequate in someting like

   \bar{AB}  or \bar{A\,B}

Since \widehat{AB} and \widetilde{AB} work well, I wonder if I've missed something!?!?!?

Vector Drawings
I've been reading Oetiker's manual on LaTeX2e and somewhat overpowered by his discussion of "Producing Mathematical Graphics". I don't know Mac software yet. Is there not some vector drawing program that could be used on the iMac and the resulting drawings saved as EPS or PostScript or ....? If there is, I'd appreciate a hint. Need to be able to create simple, coloured drawings to augment my work.

Trial.aux interference
I had a source file Trial.tex in which various simple constructs were being tried out. When I opened Trial.tex earlier today, it would not typeset. The complaint from the .log file referred to Trial.aux and complained that


was missing. Well, in Trial.tex the line «\begin{document}» was evident! Finally I noticed the reference to Trial.aux! I also observed that when Trial.aux was opened, the controlling process was ConTeXt not LaTeX!!! So I deleted Trial.aux and then Trial.tex could be typeset. I've noticed the complaint

   "the line \begin{document} is missing"

before. Is this a symptom of some dumb beginner error? What's the error?

Inserting Ascii text into TeXShop
For practice, I wanted to typeset a 16 page doc that I had created with the DTP program PageStream. The file that PageStream created was «Mechanics.pgs». So the following was done:

(1) Open a template in TeXShop which typesets okay. Save it as «Mechanics.tex» in a directory «Mechanics».

(2) Create an Ascii version of the PageStream file «Mechanics.pgs» and name the Ascii version «Mechanics.txt». Move «Mechamics.txt» from the Amiga over to the iMac and place it in the same directory «Mechanics».

(3) Open «Mechanics.tex» on the iMac. Put the text cursor on a blank line above the «\end{document}» line.

Now what? First I dragged the icon for «Mechanics.txt» into the TeXShop window. That did not work as a line 

\input{«complicated & strange path to Mechanics.txt»}

appeared but no Ascii text.

Well eventually I clumsily copied the Ascii text into the TeXShop window, but surely there is a neat way to do this!!! I tried using 

   \input{«full path to the file Mechanics.txt»}

but that was no better.

Should I have started off with a PDF or PostScript version of «Mechanics.pgs»?

Any enlightenment will be appreciated.

Cheers   Don  (Green Dragon)

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