Again some weeks without a post here, however I expect to have more time for the blog soon. Here’s a summary of interesting events and news I noticed during the last weeks.
- The PracTeX Journal 2012-1 has been published. The journal contains practical articles, in this issue for example about creating posters, ebooks, and active documents, and about using the APA6 style, visualizing the vocal tract, using MetaPost, and more.
- Texmaker 3.5.1 has been released yesterday. Now it provides export via TeX4HT to HTML, MathML and Open Document format.
- Kile 2.1.3 has been released September 23.
- TeXstudio 2.5 has been released September 17. One new feature is that it can recognize handwritten math formulas.
- The UK-TUG recorded videos of their last meeting and put them online on their vimeo channel. Topics: TeX Gyre Math font, Lua2DoX and TeX on the Raspberry Pi, Coffins: boxes with handles, the history of the longtable package, the arara compiling tool, TeX challenges, and discussions.
- Nicola Talbot published a new article on LaTeX-Community.og: Creating a glossary without using an external indexing application. This article shows how to create sorted glossaries without to run the external makeindex program, by using the datatool package.
- Andrew Stacey wrote about using TeX to make toast, or about the fun of using TeX to program the GPIO interface of a Raspberry Pi to make LEDs light.
This month I’ve got few time due to much work, so I did not write much.
So I will give a short summary what I think was interesting in the TeX world this month.
- Textmate 2 is now Open Source under GPLv3. TextMate is a popular text editor for Mac OS X which can be used for TeX and LaTeX.
- Texmaker 3.5 has been released. Texmaker is a feature-rich cross-platform LaTeX editor and Open Source too.
- Joseph Wright and Clemens Niederberger joined the LaTeX Community moderator team. Clemens wrote the chemnum, chemmacros, and modiagram packages, and maintains a blog, mychemistry.eu. Joseph is a member of the LaTeX Project, and author of packages such as siunitx and chemstyle, and maintainer of beamer and achemso.
- Joseph maintains a blog about TeX developments, in August he wrote three posts dealing with the chemfig package, based on TikZ and written by Christian Tellechea.
- Chris Hughes has written a perl script for indenting .tex files. That’s great! I will use this for formatting contributions to the TikZ Example Gallery.
- I started to use LaTeX and TikZ for Network diagrams with Cisco devices, which I use at my work as a network engineer.
- Valetta Ventures examined the TeX Writer app for iOS and noticed that it seems to base on a DOS emulator, which is an interesting approach but perhaps not legal.
- The TeX documentation server has been updated to the newest TeX Live 2012.
- TUG 2013 will be taking place in Japan.
- Werner and Peter showed a nice way of producing asymmetric under- and overbraces.
- David and Joseph contributed very interesting thougts about advantages and disadvantages of fully expandable macros.
- Did you know that csname…endcsname has a relax side effect, and why it’s useful?
- There was a lot of activity in the LyX forum of LC, much more than during the previous months. Still, LyX experts are wanted.
Cameron Bracken announced that he is looking for a new maintainer of the pgfSweave package. pgfSweave is an R package for use with Sweave for speedy compilation of high quality graphics, specifically it provides capabilities for “caching” graphics generated with Sweave. It has been created by Cameron Bracken and Charlie Sharpsteen, was available at CRAN but has now been removed until somebody would implement necessary changes.
Are you interested in continuing this project? Do you know LaTeX, R and Sweave, are you able to work with Git and Make, or willing to learn it? If you would like to contribute, just send Cameron a message.
David Latchman has posted daily reports from the TeX User Group conference 2012 in Boston:
Very nice to read what happened at the meeting, who talked and about what. Thanks, David!
Furthermore, a new issue of the LaTeX3 News paper has been published. Here’s a short overview and the link to the issue:
Today is Sysadmin day. That’s a nice opportunity to thank your sysadmin, if you have one, who may have installed your computer hardware and software, maintains servers of your company, hosts your homepage, blog, or websites you use, takes care of your network and protects you with firewall and antivirus software. Good work goes without saying, however a driven sysadmin can be very valuable for ensuring and improving your daily work. You’ll get to know it when any of the components in the network or the computers fails – and there’s one who’s able to quickly help you.
Special thanks go to sysadmins who install and maintain a TeX installation on a server or on client PCs. While often found on university servers, TeX is not so common in business companies, further keeping it up-to-date requires some work. So, if you are lucky and one maintains a TeX installation for you, it’s a good day for sending thanks to him. It can even motivate him to update to the latest TeX Live 2012, if not yet done.
Today, Texmaker version 3.4 has been released. Texmaker is a free LaTeX editor which runs on Linux, Mac OS X and Windows systems. Some of its features are Unicode capability, spell checking, auto-completion, code folding, a built-in PDF viewer with SyncTeX support and continuous view mode.
Enhancements in 3.4, from the ChangeLog file:
- The option “Use a ‘build’ subdirectory for output files” has been added for the (pdf)latex. This means, that the “–output-directory=build” parameter will automatically be added to the (pdf)latex command and texmaker will search the log and pdf files into this subdirectory.
- A word counter has been added to the internal pdf viewer (via context menu).
- The “Tool” menu provides an additional command “Open Terminal”.
- Now the “find/replace” dialogs support regular expressions.
- From the internal pdf viewer, you can now export a pdf page to a png image (via context menu).
- A “Save a copy” command has been added to the “File” menu.
- Texmaker now supports Mac OS X Lion fullscreen mode.
Today, TeX Live 2012 has been released. TeX Live is a comprehensive TeX and LaTeX system for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and other Unix systems. A special version called MacTeX 2012 is available for Mac OS X.
Changes compared to TeX Live 2011:
- tlmgr supports updates from multiple network repositories.
- The parameter XeTeXdashbreakstate is set to 1 by default. This allows line breaks after em-dashes and en-dashes, which has always been the behavior of other engines and formats such as plain TeX, LaTeX, and LuaTeX. Explicitly set XeTeXdashbreakstate to 0 for perfect line-break compatibility for existing XeTeX documents.
- The output files generated by pdftex and dvips, among others, can now exceed 2gb.
- The 35 standard PostScript fonts are included in the output of dvips by default.
- In the restricted write18 execution mode, set by default, mpost is now an allowed program.
- A texmf.cnf file is also found in ../texmf-local, e.g., /usr/local/texlive/texmf-local/web2c/texmf.cnf, if it exists.
- The updmap script reads a per-tree updmap.cfg instead of one global config.
- Platforms: armel-linux and mipsel-linux added; sparc-linux and i386-netbsd are no longer in the main distribution, but are available for installation as custom binaries, along with a variety of other platforms.
The maintenance release 2.0.4 of LyX has been published this week. Most of the improvements are bug fixes, such as crash fixes. That’s why it’s recommended to update to this version.
For further information and download visit:
Did you like an article? Or many? It would be great if you would
- comment on it – what you liked, what further ideas do you have about this topic. Feedback is very welcome by authors. If you already read an article, it’s still a good idea to visit the article again and to comment on it.
- blog about it – if you are a blogger. Tell your readers, which article you liked, what do you think about the contributions.
- share it via Twitter, google+ or Facebook – there are buttons for it over and below each post. Spread the word about LaTeX!
It will be hard to decide, which authors would be the winners. You can help: show which contributions are the most liked by you!
Here are the nominees – please vote, comment and share!
- LaTeX and Chemistry – Drawing Reaction Schemes by Clemens Niederberger
- Efficient Seamless Tiled Backgrounds by Lim Lian Tze
- Fun with gnuplot and arara by Paulo Roberto Massa Cereda
- Why should I be using TeX for graphics? by Pieter Belmans
- Tufte-style Bar Charts with pgfplots by Jürnjakob Dugge
- Semi-automatic plotting using pgfplots by Joseph Wright
- Plane affine constructions and the TikZ calc library by Hugues Vermeiren
- Overcoming some flaws with graphics created using matlab2tikz by Frits Wenneker
- Drawing with the tikz-3dplot Package by Jeff Hein
- Pic for expressive LaTeX diagrams by Allan Espinosa
Did you like the contest and some some contributions? Let the authors know!
Let’s review some time, then we will know who has won the prizes.
To have a quick glance, what the contributions show to us:
The currently running “LaTeX and Graphics” article competition on LaTeX-Community.org will close on 20/06/12. Until now, very few users told me that they would make a contribution. Which means, there’s a good chance to win one of the gnuplot books.
Do you …
- … have a blog you would like to mention?
- … maintain a web site, people may visit?
- … wrote a LaTeX related package, you would like to introduce to readers?
- … would like to show what is possible with LaTeX, today?
This contest could be a nice opportunity for these points and more. Just add some lines about you as the author and your website or your software.
Even a small blog-like post would be very welcome. Feel free to contact me via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or via the contact form. I can create an account for you both on the main and on the development server, so that you could even check the final layout before posting.