[texhax] LaTeX

Torsten Wagner torsten.wagner at gmail.com
Fri Jun 25 01:46:19 CEST 2010

Dear Jonathan,
> Do you have or can you recommend
> an editing program compatible with LaTeX. I have a PC with Windows XP
> home edition.

Do I understood correctly that until know you ask your customers who use
LaTeX to convert it into MS-Word to send it to you ?

LaTeX files are pure text files. You could even open them up in Word if
you like. They look a bit like program code but most of the time far
less complicated as you might think. Often, 95% of the file is clear
readable text and 5% are commands which ask to format the text and set
the layout.

As Alan suggested already there are plenty editors which have many
helpful functions, assisting you to use LaTeX.

In your case as a Pro, I would highly recommend to learn at least the
basics of LaTeX and ask your customers to send you the LaTeX files
directly. This looks much more professional, does not create another
cumbersome workload on your customer side (LaTeX to MS-Word conversion
for proof reading is really a head shot for any LaTeX user, no really!!!)

Its not hard, you might have to learn only the markup commands like to
set text bold, italic, etc. You might learn the basics of paragraph
formatting and how to compile a LaTeX file to generate a PDF.

You are in the lucky situation, that you get finished LaTeX files which
you only have to modify. Thus, it should be easy for you to learn just
what is needed to create your modifications.

BTW. if you are willing to learn more about LaTeX you can gain from many
other tools around the LaTeX world. E.g. you could use a version control
system which would allow you to see all changes you did to a manuscript
at all stages; to revert those changes, to keep different versions for
references, etc.

Please read:


as for Editors, you have to understand that most of the editors will not
give you a "What you see is what you get" WYSIWYG, like MS Word. They
are more focusing on assisting you to write correct LaTeX files. Finally
they help you in generation of a PDF or DVI file which contains the
final result.
Many people use WinEdt (commercial but IMHO worse the money, or
TeXnicCenter (open source) for MS Windows. Real pros like even more
basic editors wich they can heavily configure to there own needs like
Emacs or Vim.

Hope that helps a bit


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