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Re: st: math fonts/symbols

From   Marcello Pagano <>
Subject   Re: st: math fonts/symbols
Date   Sun, 13 Nov 2005 07:48:04 -0500

I restrained myself from posting yesterday! But the gauntlet has been thrown.

I use LaTeX. The only time I have had to use Word is when I am part of a writing team when the others only use Word, and those documents tend to *not* be mathematical in nature. I dislike it.

I have also used PowerPoint and LaTeX for producing slides--I am currently in my LaTeX phase. For the PowerPoint slides I have the Design Science Mathtype and have not had the problems Clive reports--you can choose the font, size, colour etc... Indeed, it is much easier to manipulate the fonts in PowerPoint than in LaTeX--see what gyrations you have to make to get bold Greek letters in math mode in LaTeX slides. The Mathtype looks suspiciously close to LaTeX, and my guess is that the engine that is driving Mathtype is probably something like LaTeX. Note that it can spit out LaTeX code for you! And some people value the WYSIWIG aspects of Mathtype and not have to go through the edit-compile-view cycle to see what every change will finally look like.

Graphics are much easier to deal with in PowerPoint. I have a tablet (IBM/Lenovo X41) and I use it for presentations and have the ability to handwrite on the slides too as I make my presentation; a very impressive capability which sits much more naturally with PowerPoint than with the way I actually do it, via LaTeX and pdf. I recommend this capability for anyone who teaches; it combines modern type setting/graphics/film capabilities with the Socratic stick-in-the-sand method of teaching. Much more immediate and much less slick.

What is true in general, although LaTeX was the earlier kid on the block, the newer capabilities tend to come sooner with the commercial software. If you are patient enough and willing to wait, what sometimes to turns out to be a year or two, then fine. If you need occasional user support (not the caliber of Stata and Statalist, of course!) then the commercial software is a better choice. Indeed, it is difficult to make general statements about LaTeX because it probably means something different to everyone out there depending on how the package has been implemented on their machine.

But all Suzy wanted was, "I am searching for inexpensive (or freeware) statistical/mathematical fonts/symbols that can be used in a word document." We all took "word" to mean "Word".

Clive Nicholas wrote:

Alan Neustadtl wrote:

FWIW, I purchased the mathtype equation editor and keep it current and
have never had any problems with it. I do produce large documents
with lots of equations.

steep! But if I get the chance to revise my thesis, I won't be rewriting
it in MS Word, that's for sure! Now, before Marcello Pagano gets cross...

CLIVE NICHOLAS |t: 0(044)7903 397793
Politics |e:
Newcastle University |

(Learning to use LaTeXEditor along with my MiKTeX pacakge.)

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