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TeX (or LaTeX) Introduction

Why TeX?

Many professional mathematicians and practitioners of other technical fields write documents for publication and presentation using typesetting software known as TeX or LaTeX. It allows the author great control and flexibility in producing files with equations and figures in a standard format. 

Using TeX

All of the computers in the Applied Math department lab, in E1 214 have a TeX writing program installed on them.  To find out more about the lab, please click here.

Most faculty members in the Department use a form of TeX, and are willing to help fix specific problems as they might arise for the beginning user. 

Working in TeX

Formatting and writing the guidelines for a TeX document can be a little intimidating at first, but here are several tutorials to help get started.

Downloading TeX on Your Computer

If you would like to use a TeX program onto a personal computer, downloads can be found at one of the following websites:

  • TUG The TeX Users Group, this is the main site for TeX info, downloads, help, and software.
  • MiKTeX A free, open source website with two versions available for download.
  • WinEdt A full-service writing and formatting application, but only trial version is free.
  • TeXnicCenter  A free, open source version of WinEdt with some modifications.
  • proTeXt Combines TeXnicCenter with Ghostscript and other usability, and is based on MiKTeX.

Below is a simple, easy-to-follow guides to downloading and starting a TeX file:

Making Presentations

TeX will also create slides for presenting research using a package called Beamer as opposed to using other presentation software such as Microsoft or Lotus PowerPoint.