# LaTeX

Notes on using LaTeX for processing documents.

What is LaTeX?

LaTeX is a typesetting programme.  Unlike WISIWIG wordprocessors such as Microsoft Word, text is written with a specific syntax that enables embedding figures, tables, equations and other document structures in plain text.  The overhead in learning how to use LaTeX is greater than that of a WISIWIG, however in the long run those students (or staff) who are writing reports with many equations, an MSc, or Ph.D. thesis could benefit from learning how to use this programme.

How do I get started?

The best way to learn how to use LaTeX is by example.  We have prepared an example report template that can be downloaded, compiled and edited to help you understand how a LaTeX document is put together and how one converts the latex file into a printable pdf document.  The files can be obtained from here:

[Note that if you are using pdflatex, you are not able to include eps files directly, and should convert the eps file into another format (for example a pdf, png, jpeg)].  Some of you might prefer to have a more detailed example.  To this end, we have also supplied a research paper LaTeX example.  The relevant files can be downloaded from here:

Once you have obtained an example file, the next step is to convert the source into a convinient format.  If you are using latex, then this will be a 2 step process: tex file → dvi file →ps or pdf file for printing.  If you are using pdflatex, then this will be a one step process from the tex file straight to a viewable or printable pdf file.