Latex is a document markup language and document preparation system for the TeX typesetting program. AnswerParty for now!
ConTeXt is a general-purpose document processor. It is especially suited for structured documents, automated document production, very fine typography, and multi-lingual typesetting. It is based in part on the TeX typesetting system, and uses a document markup language for manuscript preparation. The typographical and automated capabilities of ConTeXt are extensive, including interfaces for handling microtypography, multiple footnotes and footnote classes, and manipulating OpenType fonts and features. Moreover, it offers extensive support for colors, backgrounds, hyperlinks, presentations, figure-text integration, and conditional compilation. It gives the user extensive control over formatting while making it easy to create new layouts and styles without learning the low-level TeX macro language.
ConTeXt may be compared and contrasted with LaTeX, but the primary thrust of the two are rather distinct. ConTeXt from the ground up is a typography and typesetting system meant to provide users easy and consistent access to advanced typographical control—important for general-purpose typesetting tasks. The original vision of LaTeX is to insulate the user from typographical decisions—a useful approach for submitting, say, articles for a scientific journal. LaTeX has evolved from that original vision; at the same time, ConTeXt’s unified design avoids the package clashes that can happen with LaTeX.
ConTeXt provides a multi-lingual user interface with support for markup in English, Dutch, German, French, and Italian and support for output in many languages including western European, eastern European, Arabic-script, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. It also allows the user to use different TeX engines like pdfTeX, XeTeX, and LuaTeX without changing the user interface.
As its native drawing engine, ConTeXt integrates a superset of MetaPost called MetaFun which allows the users to use the drawing abilities of MetaPost for page backgrounds and ornaments. Metafun can also be used with stand alone MetaPost. ConTeXt also supports the use of other external drawing engines, like PGF/TikZ and PSTricks.
ConTeXt also provides a macro package for typesetting chemical structure diagrams with TeX called PPCHTeX, as well as many other modules. This package can also be used with plain TeX and LaTeX.
ConTeXt was developed from 1990][ by Hans Hagen from PRAGMA Advanced Document Engineering (Pragma ADE), a Netherlands-based company.
ConTeXt is free software: the program code (i.e. anything not under the
/doc subtree) is distributed under the GNU GPL; the documentation is provided under Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike license.
The ConTeXt official manual (2001) and ConTeXt official mini tutorial (1999) are documents copyrighted by Pragma, but there is a repository of the future new manual released under the GNU Free Documentation License. As of April 2009 there is an up-to-date version of the fonts and typography chapters.
Mark IV (abbreviated MKIV) is the current version of ConTeXt. It's a development version and new features are being added constantly, although it is fully usable. There is also a frozen version called Mark II (abbreviated MKII) which is still maintained. The main difference between MKII and MKIV is that MKIV is based on the LuaTeX engine and MKII is based on pdfTeX and XeTeX (although one could select the TeX engine used in ConTeXt). There are some documents describing the necessity of this change, how the process is being carried out, and its benefits. There are other minor differences between MKII and MKIV.
Apart from the new features of MKIV, the changes between the code of MKII and MKIV are not visible in the user interface (in syntax document level). Both MKIV and MKII were released at the same time
The oldest version of ConTeXt is Mark I, in which all the low-level code is written in Dutch. It is unmaintained.
ConTeXt was created by Hans Hagen and Ton Otten of Pragma ADE in the Netherlands around 1991 due to the need for educational typesetting material.
Around 1996, Hans Hagen coined the name ConTeXt meaning "text with tex" (con-tex-t; "con" is a Latin preposition meaning "together with"). Before 1996 ConTeXt was used only within Pragma ADE, but in 1996 it began to be adopted by a wider audience. The first users outside Pragma were Taco Hoekwater, Berend de Boer and Gilbert van den Dobbelsteen, and the first user outside the Netherlands was Tobias Burnus.
In July 2004, contextgarden.net wiki page was created.
ConTeXt low-level code was originally written in Dutch. Around 2005, the ConTeXt developers began translating this to English, resulting in the version known as MKII, which is now stable and frozen][.
In August 2007, Hans Hagen presented the MKIV version, and the first public beta was released later that year.
During the ConTeXt User Meeting 2008, Mojca Miklavec presented ConTeXt Minimals, a distribution of ConTeXt containing the latest binaries and intended to have a small memory footprint, thus demanding less bandwidth for updates. In August 2008, this distribution was registered as a project in launchpad web site.
In June 2008, Patrick Gundlach wrote the first post in ConTeXt blog.
In July 2009, ConTeXt started git repository.
In November 2010, the ConTeXt Group was created.
Making ConTeXt documents is simple: one makes a plain text file (typically with .tex extension), and compiles it with the
texexec script. The result of this process is a PDF file (ConTeXt also can generate a DVI file). An example is shown below.
Scientific WorkPlace (often abbreviated to SWP) is a software package for scientific word processing on Microsoft Windows. It is shipped as a WYSIWYG LaTeX-based word processor, together with the LaTeX document preparation system and an optional computer algebra system.
Scientific WorkPlace allows one to edit and typeset mathematical and scientific text using the WYSIWYM paradigm. All formula layout and entering of special characters can be done by either mouse or via keyboard shortcuts. As the user edits, they see the document presented in a formatted and typeset form.
Documents are stored in LaTeX format and can be typeset using any LaTeX processor to obtain typeset pages. Scientific Workplace comes with the TrueTex implementation of LaTeX and pdfTeX.
In this way SWP provides the high quality of LaTeX typesetting without requiring users to learn the LaTeX language.
Scientific WorkPlace includes a built-in computer algebra system (Maple in earlier versions and/or MuPAD in later versions) with which one can perform computations and generate plots from inside the editor.
Many document shells (i.e., templates) are included to meet the typesetting styles of specific professional journals and institutions. These shells use the corresponding LaTeX style files.
Subsets of these capabilities are available as Scientific Word (no computer algebra) and Scientific Notebook (limited LaTeX import/export, no LaTeX typesetter included).
Scientific WorkPlace combines the ease of entering and editing mathematics in mathematical notation with the ability to compute and plot with the built-in computer algebra engine. In this integrated working environment, the user can enter mathematics and perform computations without having to think or work in a programming language.
SWP contains an "Exam Builder" to construct exams algorithmically and to generate, grade, and record quizzes on a web server.
SWP also provides tools for creating 2-D and 3-D plots in many styles and coordinate systems with colored backgrounds, grid lines, and plot labels in specified locations and orientations.
SWP can open many existing LaTeX files, in particular those without custom macros, and also many with macro definitions not created in Scientific WorkPlace. The program also includes support for pdfTeX and the Hyperref package, to produce PDF documents that are fully hyperlinked, with links in the table of contents and with hierarchical bookmarks corresponding to the structure of your document.
SWP includes a "Style Editor" which allows users not familiar with LaTeX to create and modify LaTeX .sty files that customize the appearance of typeset text.
The software comes with an extensive online help system and a series of reference manuals.
Scientific WorkPlace can import text (.txt) and Rich Text Format (.rtf) files, and the user can copy content to the clipboard for export as text or graphics to other applications. It can create .dvi, .htm, .pdf, or .rtf files from the documents, or generate portable LaTeX output for transfer to different LaTeX installations.
Scientific WorkPlace has a built-in link to the World Wide Web. If a user has Internet access, a file can be opened at any URL address from inside the program, and content can be delivered via the Web. The software supports hypertext links, allowing the reader to navigate easily through a series of related documents.
There is a "read only" version of the program, called Scientific Viewer, available at no cost from the vendors, which only allows to view and print documents.
Beamer is a LaTeX class for creating slides for presentations. It supports both pdfLaTeX and LaTeX + dvips. The name is taken from the German word Beamer, a pseudo-anglicism for video projector.
The beamer class is not the first LaTeX class for creating presentations, and like many of its predecessors, it has special syntax for defining 'slides' (known in Beamer as 'frames'). Slides can be built up on-screen in stages as if by revealing text that was previously hidden or covered. This is handled with PDF output by creating successive pages that preserve the layout but add new elements, so that advancing to the next page in the PDF file appears to add something to the displayed page, when in fact it has redrawn the page.
Source code for beamer presentations, like any other LaTeX file, can be created using any text editor, but there is specific support for beamer syntax in AUCTEX and LyX.
Beamer supports syntax of other LaTeX presentation packages, including Prosper and Foils, by using compatibility packages.
Beamer provides the ability to make 'handouts', that is a version of the output suitable for printing, without the dynamic features, so that the printed version of a slide shows the final version that will appear during the presentation. For actually putting more than one frame on the paper, pgfpages package is to be used.
An "article" version is also available, rendered on standard sized paper (like A4 or letter), with frame titles used as paragraph titles, no special slide layout/colors, keeping the sectioning. This version is suitable for lecture notes or for having a single source file for an article and the slides for the talk about this article.
Beamer depends on PGF for some of its features.
LaTeX (formatted as , pronounced , , , or ), is a document markup language and document preparation system for the TeX typesetting program. The term LaTeX refers only to the language in which documents are written, not to the editor application used to write those documents. In order to create a document in LaTeX, a .tex file must be created using some form of text editor. While most text editors can be used to create a LaTeX document, a number of editors have been created specifically for working with LaTeX.
LaTeX is widely used in academia. It is also used as the primary method of displaying formulas on Wikipedia. As a primary or intermediate format, e.g., translating DocBook and other XML-based formats to PDF, LaTeX is used because of the high quality of typesetting achievable by TeX. The typesetting system offers programmable desktop publishing features and extensive facilities for automating most aspects of typesetting and desktop publishing, including numbering and cross-referencing, tables and figures, page layout and bibliographies.
LaTeX is intended to provide a high-level language that accesses the power of TeX. LaTeX essentially comprises a collection of TeX macros and a program to process LaTeX documents. Because the TeX formatting commands are very low-level, it is usually much simpler for end-users to use LaTeX.
LaTeX was originally written in the early 1980s by Leslie Lamport at SRI International. The current version is LaTeX2e (styled as ). LaTeX is free software and is distributed under the LaTeX Project Public License (LPPL).
LaTeX is based on the philosophy that authors should be able to focus on the content of what they are writing without being distracted by its visual presentation. In preparing a LaTeX document, the author specifies the logical structure using familiar concepts such as chapter, section, table, figure, etc., and lets the LaTeX system worry about the presentation of these structures. It therefore encourages the separation of layout from content while still allowing manual typesetting adjustments where needed. This is similar to the mechanism by which many word processors allow styles to be defined globally for an entire document or the use of Cascading Style Sheets to style HTML.
LaTeX can be arbitrarily extended by using the underlying macro language to develop custom formats. Such macros are often collected into packages, which are available to address special formatting issues such as complicated mathematical content or graphics. Indeed, in the example below, the
align environment is provided by the
The example below shows the LaTeX input and corresponding output:
LaTeX is usually pronounced or in English (that is, not with the pronunciation English speakers normally associate with X, but with a ). The characters T, E, X in the name come from capital Greek letters tau, epsilon, and chi, as the name of TeX derives from the Greek: (skill, art, technique); for this reason, TeX's creator Donald Knuth promotes a pronunciation of () (that is, with a voiceless velar fricative as in Modern Greek, similar to the last sound of the German word "Bach", the Spanish "j" sound, or as ch in loch). Lamport, on the other hand, has said he does not favor or discourage any pronunciation for LaTeX.
The name is traditionally printed in running text with a special typographical logo: . In media where the logo cannot be precisely reproduced in running text, the word is typically given the unique capitalization LaTeX. The TeX, LaTeX and XeTeX logos can be rendered via pure CSS and XHTML for use in graphical web browsers following the specifications of the internal \LaTeX macro.
LaTeX is typically distributed along with plain TeX. It is distributed under a free software license, the LaTeX Project Public License (LPPL). The LPPL is not compatible with the GNU General Public License, as it requires that modified files must be clearly differentiable from their originals (usually by changing the filename); this was done to ensure that files that depend on other files will produce the expected behavior and avoid dependency hell. The LPPL is DFSG compliant as of version 1.3. As free software, LaTeX is available on most operating systems including UNIX (Solaris, HP-UX, AIX), BSD (FreeBSD, Mac OS X, NetBSD, OpenBSD), Linux (Red Hat, Debian, Arch, Gentoo), Microsoft Windows (9x, XP, Vista, 7), DOS, RISC OS, AmigaOS and Plan9.
As a macro package, LaTeX provides a set of macros for TeX to interpret. There are many other macro packages for TeX, including Plain TeX, GNU Texinfo, AMSTeX, and ConTeXt.
When TeX "compiles" a document, it follows (from the user's point of view) the following processing sequence: Macros > TeX > Driver > Output. Different implementations of each of these steps are typically available in TeX distributions. Traditional TeX will output a DVI file, which is usually converted to a PostScript file. More recently, Hàn Thế Thành and others have written a new implementation of TeX called pdfTeX, which also outputs to PDF and takes advantage of features available in that format. The XeTeX engine developed by Jonathan Kew merges modern font technologies and Unicode with TeX.
The default font for LaTeX is Knuth's Computer Modern, which gives default documents created with LaTeX the same distinctive look as those created with plain TeX. XeTeX allows the use of OpenType and TrueType (that is, outlined) fonts for output files.
There are also many editors for LaTeX.
LaTeX2e is the current version of LaTeX, since it replaced Latex 2.09 in 1994. As of 2013[update], a future version called LaTeX3, started in the early 1990s, is still in development. Planned features include improved syntax, hyperlink support, a new user interface, access to arbitrary fonts, and new documentation.
There are numerous commercial implementations of the entire TeX system. System vendors may add extra features like additional typefaces and telephone support. LyX is a free, WYSIWYM visual document processor that uses LaTeX for a back-end. TeXmacs is a free, WYSIWYG editor with similar functionalities as LaTeX but a different typesetting engine. Other WYSIWYG editors that produce LaTeX include Scientific Word on MS Windows.
A number of TeX distributions are available, including TeX Live (multiplatform), teTeX (deprecated in favor of TeX Live, UNIX), fpTeX (deprecated), MiKTeX (Windows), proTeXt (Windows), MacTeX (TeX Live with the addition of Mac specific programs), gwTeX (Mac OS X), OzTeX (Mac OS Classic), AmigaTeX (no longer available) and PasTeX (AmigaOS, available on the Aminet repository).
LaTeX documents (*.tex) can be opened with any text editor. Additionally, TeX documents can be shared by rendering the LaTeX file to Rich Text Format (.rtf) or XML. This can be done using the free software programs LaTeX2RTF or TeX4ht. LaTeX can also be rendered to PDF files using the tool pdfLaTeX.
TeXworks is an open-source application software, available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. It is a graphical user interface to the typesetting system TeX and its extensions LaTeX, ConTeXt, and XeTeX.
The developer Jonathan Kew (developer of XeTeX) deliberately modeled TeXworks on Dick Koch’s award-winning application software TeXShop for Mac OS X to lower the entry barrier to the TeX world for those using desktop operating systems other than Mac OS X.
TeXworks requires a TeX-Installation: TeX Live, MiKTeX, or MacTeX.
LaTeX2HTML is a converter written in Perl that converts LaTeX documents to HTML. This way, e.g., scientific papers—primarily typeset for printing—can be put on the Web for online viewing. It is licensed under GNU GPL v2.
Desktop publishing software
A document processor is a document preparation system that superficially resembles a word processor. However, the emphasis in a document processor is on the arrangement of the document's components, not the formatting of the characters that compose it. The available tools are not just typical document elements—paragraphs, lists, headers—the primary attraction of a document processor is the ability to program documents with powerful conditional automatic formatting rules to create structured documents, which allow large numbers of similar elements to be generated and reformatted for different media with little human effort.
Examples of document processors include programs like PTC Arbortext APP (formerly Advent 3B2,) Adobe FrameMaker, LyX, BroadVision QuickSilver (formerly Interleaf TPS,) and Syntext Serna. Examples of markup languages used for non-graphical document processing include SGML/XML, LaTeX and troff.