The TeX showcase

This is the TeX showcase, edited by Gerben Wierda. It contains examples of what you can do with TeX, the typesetting engine from Donald Knuth, world famous mathematician, computer scientist and above all well known for TeX. I will try to keep this showcase small. For remarks on submissions, see at the end of this document.

In this showcase, you will not only find examples of material prepared with TeX proper, but also with macro packages like LaTeX, ConTeXt and with related programs like METAPOST. And though TeX is a typesetting language, you will find graphics and even an MPEG movie.

Showcases are mostly PDF files. Some PDF files contain tricks that only work in certain PDF-viewers, e.g. they might contain automatic changes in the page that work in certain versions of Acrobat and only when certain preferences are set. The descriptions will contain special instructions if any.

Most examples come with some sort of source. These sources are not guaranteed to compile, they are only there for visual inspection. Some may compile, but some may have parts missing.

Some of these examples were prepared using proprietary fonts or software that must be purchased. For a discussion of font usage with TeX, including a sampler of available free fonts, please see this separate font page.

One word on the sections. These are generated automatically from a database and their titles speak for themselves. The exception is the section Yannis Haralambous. Yannis is famous in the world of TeX for his work on typesetting several languages (like Greek and Hebrew) with TeX. He donated a series of samples. The Hebrew and Syrian fonts are bitmaps, they might not look perfect in all circumstances.



Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
cover.pdf cover.tex Plamen Tanovski writes:

my contribution is actually nothing special in the world of TeX. I've used the cd-cover class and the tiling macros from PSTricks to produce nice looking enclosure for my sample cd. The idea for the cover is based upon a title page by Imre Reiner.

The interesting point, I think, is the use of ornaments. Ornaments have accompanied the letters trough the whole history of the book. Being once *the* typographer's adornment for centuries, ornaments are nowadays -- where books are made by graphic designers -- almost forgotten and replaced with blurred meaningless color spots (quoting the german typographer H. P. Willberg: "visuelles Hintergrundrauschen" [visual background hissing]); maybe because it's not easy to make patterns and borders by clicking around with the mouse.

So I think it is a great chance for TeX to bring back ornaments in the books. There are enough tools to do that in TeX/PostScript/MetaPost etc. and fortunately there are still many ornamental fonts available.

P.S. I know, there are some articles on tiling with TeX, but they are most technically oriented. Mine is a real life example.

program_sample.pdf program_sample.tex

Note: the file is 5.8MB

Christopher Creutzig writes:

It shows a Metapost-generated background, XeTeX-set text, everything combined with ConTeXt using pdfTeX. I've used Acrobat to extract only a part of the whole file, mostly because the complete thing makes sense only if you cut and fold it the right way

maps.pdf maps.tex Submitter Jonathan Guyer writes:

This is a set of maps that I made for the frontispiece of a bound volume of my mother's journals that she wrote during a sailing trip in the Greek islands. My fiancée and I put the whole thing together for a Christmas present last year. Key ingredients are WARMreader for the route labeling and babel for the place names.

There are some errors in the route [probably doesn't matter to you 8^) ] and there's a lot of extraneous stuff in the preamble because it was cut and pasted from the manuscript. Further, I don't know squat about Greek, so I undoubtedly made errors in some of the labels.

The map was produced in IGOR Pro from coastal data I found someplace online (I don't remember where offhand). I supposed If I'd been truly masochistic, I would have used XYpic to produce the whole thing...

lee-wilczynski.pdf lee-wilczynski.tex A piece of math and pictures submitted by Dariusz Wilczynski. He writes:

I'm sending you a one-page excerpt from a paper of mine that was published in the American Journal of Mathematics. Hope you will find it useful. I'm sure Ross Moore and others can provide more interesting examples of the power of Xy-pic.

BarnstormingBitter.pdf BarnstormingBitter.tex A Beer bottle label created with TeX. I could use a bottle right now...

Submitter Kester Clegg writes:

The labels are designed to be cut out and put round the neck of beer bottles (my home brews as it happens!). One thing I like about using latex instead of a normal graphics program is that I get minute control, I can work on a single label for speed, and when I'm finished, I uncomment my 'block' of labels and bingo! I get the whole lot at once!

cubs_v_cards_8sep98.pdf scored_game.tex Christopher Swingley writes:

This is a Metapost program and wrapper TeX document that generates a baseball scorecard, as well as demonstrates the scoring from the game where Mark McGwire broke Roger Maris' season home run record in 1998. The Metapost code includes a variety of locations, paths, and functions to make it easy to generate nice-looking baseball scorecards with or without the scoring.

I've included the Metapost source, as well as the wrapper file I use to produce PDF versions for printing on letter sized paper.

cave.pdfNo source availableMartin Budaj writes:

This contribution is a little bit unusual. It is a cave map produced by Therion, free cave mapping software. It uses MetaPost for drawing of map symbols such as passage walls or lakes, and pdfTeX for all the typesetting. It demonstrates the incredible flexibility of TeX and MetaPost.

I hope it will be interesting, although there is no source code included. (Therion uses its own input language; MetaPost and TeX files are generated at the run-time.)

The Therion homepage is on the

ps_s_1b.pdf ps_s_1b.tex A physics problem sheet with pictures created with pstricks.

Submitted by Christopher Allen.

poster.pdf poster.tex Jonny Butler writes:

It's a poster I made for presenting at a linguistics conference. I was wary about trying to do something like this with LaTeX at my level, but I was astonished at how easy it turned out to be (even though it is in places a bit of a hack...)

diagram.pdf diagram.tex Submitter Bob Tennent writes:

Hi. I thought this might be of interest, primarily because it shows what can be done *without* WYSYWYG tools. The source consists of just 148 lines of LaTeX and uses John Reynolds's fine macros package for diagrams (diagmac). The diagram was designed to be viewed on the web.


Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
cheat.pdf cheat.tar.gz Note, the source is a gzip compressed tar archive.

Submitter Martin Jansche writes:

Here's an example of TeX formatting many many equations under tight space constraints: Steve Seiden's theoretical computer science cheat sheet, which used to be available from Quoting the web page:

I grant permission for you to reproduce this cheat sheet, and redistribute it for educational purposes only. You may not reproduce it for profit. If you reproduce it, you must not alter or delete my copyright.
GW 2003: I have been informed that it's author, Steve Seiden, died in 2002 as the result of an accident while riding his bike.

Languages of the world

Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
esther-ch2.pdf esther-ch2.tex Submitter Art Werschulz writes:

Alan Hoenig has recently released version 2 of his Makor system. Makor is a system for high-quality Hebrew typesetting, which runs under Omega.

As an experiment, I typeset the second chapter of the book of Esther from the Hebrew Bible. This essentially involved downloading the BHS (Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia) version of Esther from the web, changing all instances of ~ to @, adding a few lines of boilerplate to the top and the bottom of the file, and running it through omega. BTW, I'm running MacOS X 10.2.4 on an 800MHz G4 iMac, along with your latest i-Installer distribution of the TeX stuff.

arabic.pdf arabic.tex An excerpt from Multilingual Typesetting with OMEGA, a Case Study: Arabic, by Yannis Haralambous and John Plaice. These are the last three pages from the well known torture.tex file. (This is done with Omega, the extension of TeX to Unicode). Submitted by Norbert Preining.

This is an example of how well TeX can be adapted to all different languages, even typesetting from right to left. I do not know what it says here, so do not hold me responsible.

chinese.pdf chinese.tex Submitter Martin Jansche writes:

I'm attaching two files that use the CJK package to typeset Chinese. Note that you don't see anything like \includepackage{CJK} in the LaTeX source, since it has to first be exported in cjk-encoding by Emacs, at which point the appropriate commands are inserted. The process is described in the file. The tight integration of CJK and Emacs makes it especially easy to mix and match different scripts and/or character sets.

hindi.pdf hindi.dn An example of Hindi, from the devnag package of Velthuis. Submitted by Norbert Preining.

This is an example of how well TeX can be adapted to all different languages. I do not know what it says here, so do not hold me responsible.

tibetan.pdf tibetan.tex A piece of Tibetan text which describes the Story of a Brahman and his family.

Submitted by Norbert Preining.

General Typesetting

Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
leaflet.pdfNo source availableI think you need to zoom in or print this document if you really want to see how nice it is. And remember its advice: you need at least a 66MHz processor and 32MB memory for TeX!

Submitter Karl Berry writes:

Peter Flynn's LaTeX brochure is pretty amazing, IMHO.

pp.pdf pp.tex Another fine typesetting example showing how well TeX can produce beautiful books. It is created with the ConTeXt package. Submitted by Bill McClain.
ShowcaseCircular.pdf ShowcaseCircular.tex This example shows TeX's power to set in strange paragraph shapes. TeX has been told the shape, but for the rest TeX just does its normal job, breaking lines into words and paragraphs into lines. Submitted by Dariusz Wilczynski.
onetype.pdf onetype.tex A treatise on a typeface by font-specialist William Adams.

It's designed to be printed all on a letter-sized sheet of paper and folded into a small booklet.

peace_on_earth.pdfNo source availableLook at this example and especially, zoom in to the text. Submitter William Adams writes:

It is a small French gatefold card which one can print to fit any decent size paper and then fold in half twice to get a card.

It is typeset in Zapfino using Omega and techniques which I hope to document and present presently.

I hope everyone will enjoy it in the spirit in which it is offered.

csky-sample.pdf csky-sample.tex Another fine typesetting example, which shows marginal notes and graphics. It is created with the ConTeXt package. Submitted by Bill McClain.
0309Newsletter.pdf 0309Newsletter.tex Bob Kerstetter writes:

Here are the source files and PDF output for a monthly newsletter. There may be better ways to do this, but it works okay and Alt-N is happy with it.

Some of the word spacing in the narrow columns is a too large. I reduced it from terrible to livable by rewriting and doing copy fitting. The newsletter makes extensrive use of minipage and has lot of links. I would not call it interactive, however. It's more of a practical way to communicate with our distributors and resellers.

It is not pretty like lots of things on the showcase, but it does show a practical way of using LaTeX for a newsletter. It is certainly easier for me to do this than with a page layout program where all of your content is trapped inside the document.

diminuendo.pdf diminuendo.tex Submitter Peter Hammond writes:

This is some rather old trickery, using Plain TeX and a readily resizable Postscript font, based on the \length macro example on p. 219 of the TeXbook. The result would be the complete decimal expansion of some prominent rational, irrational and transcendental numbers, in a finite area, except that of course the digits become too small to see (or print) rather fast. (Some of it appears within the cover design for our textbook, Essential Mathematics for Economic Analysis.)

partofTheBookofTea.pdfNo source availableTypography from The Book of Tea by Okakura Kazuko, submitted by William Adams

The complete book (including the graphics shown in the icon) can be downloaded here (2.7MB)

winawer.pdf Blatny-Klinger.tex Blatny-Klinger-readme1st.txt Note, this impressive example is 1.1MB in size.

Submitter Ulrich Dirr writes:

Here are a few pages of 352 from a chess book (Kindermann/Dirr: Französisch Winawer, Band 1: 7. Dg4 0--0). Typesetting was done by PDFLaTeX (then v0.14h). Printed on art paper using a two colour setup (black and a spot color), the book was published in 2001 by Chessgate AG.

The interested TeXie will recognize the creation and utilization of special fonts (Adobe Jenson (with special ligatures and kerning for german), ITC Legacy Sans, Castellar (initials), and self-made chess fonts for figurine notation and diagrams )

I've downsampled the images to 96dpi. Otherwise the file would have been 3.2MB.

6553-sample.pdf 6553-specs.pdf Sometimes the most beautifully typeset non-mathematical books are actually made with TeX.

Submitter Larry Tseng writes:

[This is] an example of what TeX can do, when used by people who make their living setting type to implement the type specifications and layout of a distinguished book designer.

The book is Exiles from a Future Time by Alan M. Wald, University of North Carolina Press. The design is by Richard Eckersley, whose achievements in book design have earned him the designation of Royal Designer for Industry by the Royal Society of Arts. His work is also in several museum collections, including the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institute.

The sample is in the form of double-page spreads, intended to be viewed with Acrobat version 5 and above. Acrobat's full-screen mode with text-smoothing are recommended for best results. Some restrictions have been placed on the pdf content to discourage printing and extraction.

Included also are the type specifications in a separate pdf -- perhaps a much more interesting alternative to style files and other sources given that the book was set with Buffalo TeX, an in-house package that has its own special control sequences and syntax.

For people who would like to see more of this sort of thing, we've set up a kind of "extension to the official TeX showcase" to show the work of other book designers that we have worked with in the past, all typeset with TeX of course. Simply log on to the showbooks page at

learning_early.pdf learning_early.tex

This is a nice screen-oriented document. Note: this document is 2.4MB in size.

António Almeida writes:

I submit here a document that I wrote using pdfLaTeX with some packages. It has the peculiar characteristic of being written with easy to get fonts, besides the CM family and the 35 standard fonts Adobe.

This is a document that introduces Early Music to all audiences. It can be found in



Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
x.mpg x.README x.makemovie x.param Note, this file is 1MB in size.

This example is a funny MPEG movie, created with METAPOST, which is part of the TeX family of programs. It has been submitted by Hartmut Henkel. He writes:

I have created a small technical movie (premiere) about a certain species of liquid Indium ion emitter (Liquid Indium Metal Source, LIMS), which sometimes is used in space for propulsion or scientific experiments (e.g. by the company where I work).

The movie shows the heating of the Indium reservoir until the Indium melts. Forced by a strong electrical field (not shown) the Indium creeps to the tip of a Tungsten needle and builds a so-called Taylor cone there. From the tip of the cone Indium ions are extracted by the same field. --- After some operational time the In reservoir gets empty. Don't take this part too serious :-)

It's some 600 frames, drawn by MetaPost one by one, printed, put sheet by sheet on the scanner. Just kidding, it goes through a shell script (under debian Linux) starting with MetaPost, blows up to over 1GByte of .ppm files by ghostscript and then shrinks to the mpeg by mpeg_encode.

johnhigexerpt.pdf johnhigexerpt.txt Submitter Scott Higinbotham writes:

Here is a contribution to your TeX showcase, if it seems appropriate. I do genealogy as a hobby, and I have kept the results of my work in book format almost from the beginning. I used Word for the Mac originally, but maintaining the document through the constant updates resulting from new information was not easy. I wanted something a little more automatic. This was accomplished using a database (4D) to keep the basic information (names, dates, and family groupings), individual text files for the narratives about each individual, and then having the database generate a LaTeX file, which TeX would process and put together in book form, generating a TOC and an index in the usual manner.

There is not much fancy TeX code involved, but the result seems to impress even experienced amateurs who have looked at it. It seemed to me that this might be interesing because it is an application which is a bit far afield from the usual disciplines where TeX has taken hold.

The example is anexcerpt from the genealogy.

kv315f.pdf kv315f.tex A Music example submitted by Norbert Preining. This is from the Andante KV 315, W.A. Mozart, transcription from D. Taupin
EulerGibbsDuhem.pdf EulerGibbsDuhem.tex EulerGibbsDuhem.html

This example is just an ordinary article with some math in it. However, using the htlatex tool from the TeX4ht suite, the same TeX source has been used to produce the PDF file you see when you click the icon as well as the web page you see when you click on the EulerGibbsDuhem.html link in the second column.

Submitted by Stephen Addison

LM-Volume-manuscript.pdf LM-Volume-manuscript.tex An example of creating documents with hyperlinks (internal and external) using the hyperref package. Claus Gerhardt writes:

I am not sure if this paper qualifies as a TeX showcase example, since nowadays everybody who is writing mathematical papers is using TeX, and these people need not to be convinced, but it might be a showcase for the beauty of hyperref.

en_gb_eclipse_114.pdfNo source availableAn example of a catalog entry automatically created from a vendor's database. Submitted by Stephan Lehmke. He writes:

I've attached another PDF which doesn't really have a TeX source because it's automatically generated from data, but I find the application itself quite excellent. You can find it among around 800 siblings at (for instance /download/data/_lsp/indoor/system/fr/fr_pollux_119.pdf).

Yannis Haralambous

Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
yannis_sample14.pdfNo source availableFrom a critical edition of Saranadeva's Durghatavrtti, in Sanskrit (Devanagari script).
yannis_sample02.pdfNo source availableThese two pages are taken from the Greek edition of Giambattista Bodoni's Manuale Typographico (published by Agra, in 2003), a landmark in the history of typography. The font used in the title page has been designed by Atelier Fluxus Virus especially for this occasion: it is the genuine Greek capital letters typeface of Bodoni, as it is presented in this very book. (continued with next sample)
yannis_sample11.pdfNo source availableA page of Bar Hebraeus, Chronicon Ecclesiasticum in Syriac (Serto script) and Latin translation. The Syriac part had been typeset using Sabra system (by Yannis Haralambous).
yannis_sample08.pdfNo source availableAn Arabic text written by Idris Samawi Hamid, with full Arabic vowelization. The font used is Monotype Naskhi with hundreds of additions designed by Atelier Fluxus Virus.
yannis_sample01.pdfNo source availableA page from the book Mikael by Theophans Ioannou, published in Greece by Indiktos (May 2003). Theophans is a new author and good friend of ours. He has commissioned the Atelier Fluxus Virus to design the font used in this sample, out of the Complete Works of Aristotle edited by Bekker in Leipzig, in the early 19th century. We have called this font Bekkeriana in honour of Bekker, and all of Theophans' works will be published in it. This requires a lot of courage, because in contemporary Greece---contrarily to Europe---there is great reluctance against typefaces older than 50-70 years. We hope that this editorial attempt will bring the Greek public of readers closer to their national typographical heritage, and not only for facsilimiles or simulations of historical typography, but also for modern texts, as is this one.
yannis_sample13.pdfNo source availableA text in Amharic from Miraculorum S. Georgii Magelomartyris, from the collection Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, with critical apparatus.
yannis_sample05.pdfNo source availableA page from the journal Inscriptiones graecae. The Greek font used is New Hellenic, with additional glyphs designed by Atelier Fluxus Virus for epigraphical texts.
yannis_sample09.pdfNo source availableThe beginning of the Book of Genesis, in Hebrew. Typesetting and font are from the Tiqwah system, by Yannis Haralambous. The critical appartus is taken from the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia. The font is designed in Metafont (this explains the bad display by Acrobat).
yannis_sample07.pdfNo source availableThe same Arabic inscription in four styles: Nastaliq, Diwani, Thuluth and Ruqaah.
yannis_sample06.pdfNo source availableA page from Ibn Rush's Commentaries on Aristotle's Book of Categories, in Arabic. On the upper side, the text by Ibn Rush, on the lower side the Arabic version of Aristotle's text. Each one of these parallel texts has a critical apparatus.
yannis_sample10.pdfNo source availableA text in Judeo-spanish, from The Judeo-Spanish Ballad Chapbooks of Yacob Abaraham Yon. Text in quadratic and Rashi script.
yannis_sample03.pdfNo source available(continued) The font used in the text is a very special Greek font, designed by Atelier Fluxus Virus out of hot lead types. It is called dekaexaria, which means "16 points", and is a hot lead typeface which has never been adapted to Linotype or Monotype machines and has been used very frequently in chapter titles or cover pages, and for entire books in bibliophilic collections. It is an extremely vivid font and has very special accents and kernings. It is one of these fonts where each individual glyph looks badly drawn, but the global image of text looks very appealing. There is only one hic: it has nothing to do with Bodoni, and is rather historically connected to the Didot school.
yannis_sample04.pdfNo source availableA double page (original ancient Greek text and modern Greek translation) from Lucian's Alexander or the False Prophet, published by Agra (collection Melaina Chol in 2003. The font used for the ancient Greek text is Monotype Porson, except for the capital letters which have been designed by Atelier Fluxus Virus out of 19th century Oxford editions. Notice that capitals are straight while lowercase letters are slanted. The fonts used for the modern Greek text are Monotype Greek 90 and Greek 91.
yannis_sample12.pdfNo source availableA text in Coptic, from Apocryphon Johannis in the Nag Hammadi Codex II. The font used is Monotype Coptic.

Dynamic documents

Case (click for document)SourceWhat it is
calvec.pdf calvec.tex As for most dynamics, the workings depend on your viewer.

Submitter Orlando C.Rodríguez writes:

This is another submission, which combines the hyperref and the insdljs packages, to create an interactive document that performs simple vector calculus operations.

Automaton.pdf Automaton.tex This example shows dynamic output created with TeX. Not all previewers will be able to display the dynamism in this document, e.g. on Mac OS X cannot handle it. But Acrobat can. Open it, set it to Full Screen and hit return a couple of times. Submitted by Stephan Lehmke. He writes: a bit of finite automata simulation done with PSTricks (automata package).
macqtexDemo.pdfNo source availableThis example does not work in all PDF-viewers (especially Mac OS X does not handle this). Use Acrobat. Submitter Frances Griffin writes:

This is an example of the mathematics quizzes we are using at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia. It uses JavaScript inside a PDF document, so that the questions are automatically marked, and on completion of the quiz, the correct answers and fully worked solutions become visible.

We have set up an automated system which generates random parameters for the questions, pdfTeXs the quiz and serves a unique and personalised version of it to the student. The demo quiz here is fully self contained, but the quizzes we use for the students send the scores back to our server to be recorded.

It is based on DP Story's exerquiz package, along with some customizations we have made, and pdfscreen. There are more like this here.

tabela_periodica.pdf tabela_periodica.tex A dynamic periodic table in Portuguese. Click an entry to get extra information. As with many dynamic examples, it depends on your viewer if this works.

Submitter Orlando C.Rodríguez writes:

I'm sending you an interactive periodic table written in portuguese, using LaTeX with the color and hyperref packages.

LorenzAttractor.pdf LorenzAttractor.tex This example does not work in all readers (e.g. it does not work in Mac OS X 10.2's, but it works in Acrobat. Click on the picture and see it rotate.

Submitted by Jochen Skupin

This showcase does not have very fancy markup. It is created automatically by a perl script and a driver file and I am not an HTML-expert, that is why.

If you want to contribute something that is not already there, or which is better than what is already there, please send me a submission by e-mail. Do not send me URLs or anything that requires work for me to find it or download it, I must set a limit somewhere and I will generally not include items I have to go browsing for. Sorry.

Include the case and make sure it looks good on screen as well as in print (so no bitmap fonts), and if possible some source and a description. If you want, add a JPG or TIFF of 150x200 (width x length) pixels just like the icons above. Preferably, keep your names in sync: foo.pdf for the showcase entry with foo.jpg for the icon. Include source. It does not need to be complete in that it can be compiled and that all necessary support files are there, but it should illustrate how it was done in TeX (or MetaPost or whatever).

E-mail your submissions to tex-showcase at

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