{tex-core} is for questions that are independent of formats and macro packages. Such questions usually relate to low-level TeX programming or the behaviour of TeX at an underlying level. Note that even Plain TeX is a format in itself; for questions about it, use {plain-tex}.

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3
votes
2answers
38 views

How to separate each section in moderncv to different tex files

How to separate each section in moderncv to different .tex files and include it in main file so that it becomes handy. Consider separating each sections Education to Education.tex, Experience to ...
4
votes
1answer
71 views

Lua to Tex : content and variable content different?

Here is something bizarre ! (I mean I don't understand). I enter a content, let's say "Something" in the (global) variable context. In line 2 of the following code, as one may anticipate, we have the ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

How to solved the problem with conditions? [duplicate]

I would question how do I solve the following problem. This is a stylistic package where I needed to create a condition. I have made a choice of work as semestral, bachelor. When selecting semestral ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

if (first or second condition) <true> else <false> [duplicate]

does anyone know how to write the condition (if) with two conditions? \ifx{**1 condition** or 2 condition} <true> \else <false> Thank you.
6
votes
2answers
96 views

Prevent \topinsert on chapter page (Plain TeX)

How to define chapter to prevent insertion of floating figures and tables (\topinsert) on chapter page. I would like to place an object at the top of the next page. \def\chap#1{\vfil\break \vglue1cm ...
1
vote
0answers
33 views

Maxima tex() function without computing the equation? [closed]

This may be simple but is there a way in Maxima to not compute an equation and output in Tex? An example would be: (%i1) tex(2^7 * 3^8 + sqrt(100)); $$839818$$ (%o1) ...
0
votes
0answers
160 views

pdflatex fatal error because of Bad parameter value, font_mem_size

during plotting graphics with pgfplot I faced the problem of two many data points in one plot so I first tried to avoid it, but later I needed more data points. This question How to expand TeX's ...
4
votes
1answer
177 views

Using PDFLaTeX inside C# .Net code does not load some math symbols

On my Windows 8.1 with MikTeK installed, the following C# code successfully generates a PDF file with Math expressions except for some Unicode codes such as plusminus sign: ProcessStartInfo startInfo ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

halign and vertical spacings

Here is a somewhat simple \halign usage which show that I'm missing something: \documentclass{article} \begin{document} \halign{&#\cr \noalign{\hrule} \rule{0.4pt}{4cm}& ...
11
votes
2answers
296 views

What is the difference between assigning and \def

What is the syntax difference between these two assignments (basically) \arraycolsep=1mm \def\arraystretch{0.7} What are the fundamental differences of the command \arraycolsep and \arraystretch ...
4
votes
1answer
80 views

Center last line of the paragraph; but I don't like small lines

Attention: This is an advanced TeX problem. I usually dislike lines that are too small, and so I tend to add \parfilskip=2em plus 0.6\textwidth to my documents (apart from small lines, this also ...
5
votes
1answer
149 views

GNU Readline- like history, for the latex terminal shell?

I find myself more than often willing to use the (pdf)latex shell, and \typeout commands there directly - unfortunately, there is one deal breaker: there is no command line history. I think that in ...
10
votes
2answers
138 views

assign penalty to one discretionary (not all paragraph)

For a quite complex problem that would be too long to describe, I need to set different penalties for different discretionaries in the same paragraphe. It doesn't seem to be possible with pdfTeX (and ...
37
votes
3answers
2k views

What does the 'etex' package do, exactly?

I was creating a rather large LaTeX project, so I had to use many packages. This gave me an error No room for a new \dimen \newdimen \MPscratchDim while my editor(Kile) opened the file ...
100
votes
2answers
10k views

What are penalties and which ones are defined?

Very often you can find solutions by changing the penalty. One is widowpenalty. However what are penalties and is there a small list of every defined penalty. There is a German site which does ...
3
votes
1answer
54 views

What handles kerning TeX or DviOut

Does TeX process kerning so that sw reading dvi file does not need to do kerning as defined in tfm file but can run with character widhts information from tfm file only. I use TeX not LaTeX. I am ...
94
votes
4answers
107k views

\vspace vs. \vskip [duplicate]

What is the difference between \vspace{-1em} and \vskip -1em, for example? I guess the first is LaTeX, and the latter is TeX. When is the proper time to use one and not the other, and why?
4
votes
2answers
131 views

How to place amsmath equations at top of page ignoring \topskip?

I need every amsmath equation to place at the top of the page. So I use \noindent to do that. Everything is fine except equation+split environment. Than formula is placed a bit higher (by ...
7
votes
1answer
390 views

TeX: reasons to start tokens using backslash

I was wondering over the TeX programming language syntax. Is there a known reason why Knuth chose the backslash notation we all love and fear? It seams to me that most other contemporary languages (C, ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

Latex files not compiling due to buffer size

So I have some Latex files with large eps images which cause a buf_size error. When I was compiling the files a few months ago I solved the problem by increasing the buffer size in texmf.cnf. I have ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

Rendering text as image to protect e-mail address

I want to protect my e-mail address against spammers by including it as image instead of a (parsable) text. Normally I would have to create the image (with text) by myself and include this as figure. ...
5
votes
2answers
97 views

How to define macros that are executed at begin and end of the page body or text column(s)?

I need a way to insert \special{...} or \pdfliteral{...} commands at the start of the page body and at its end, but before headers and footers are inserted into the box to be shipped out. The ...
20
votes
4answers
2k views

What is a “Control Sequence”?

When you get an error in LaTeX, the message "Undefined control sequence" is printed. Why is it called "control sequence" and not "command", for example? How does the sequence work? Is this a TeX or ...
19
votes
2answers
1k views

Why do we need \ldots?

While trying to understand Chapter 12 of Knuth's TeXbook about Glueing, I run into troubles in understanding why \ldots ends up in looking better than .... It seems to me that the usual period . has ...
0
votes
0answers
43 views

LaTeX pgfplots - dimension too large

i have problem with drawing graphs... \begin{tikzpicture} \begin{axis}[ xtick=\empty, ytick=\empty, minor tick num=0, anchor=origin, % Align the origins axis lines=middle, ...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

Does LuaTeX change the message in “Output Routines Part IV: Horizontal Techniques”?

In the excellent article "Output routines: examples and techniques Part IV: Horizontal techniques", David Salomon explores three techniques for dealing with communication from horizontal mode to the ...
1
vote
1answer
90 views

Is there an alternative to {} that also expands to nothing?

I have a weird bug in my text editor that causes it to incorrectly indent any lines that start with special characters, such as greek letters. % My editor will indent the leading spaces in this line ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

Distributing a LaTeX2e compiler in .NET application

Is there a way to wrap a LaTeX compiler with a .NET application, so that the wrapper can compile an output .tex file, and visualize the results? Where can I get a compiler (For free, commercial?) ...
13
votes
3answers
763 views

What is Tex's gullet?

Chapter 7 of The TEXbook famously talks of Tex as having 'eyes', 'mouth' and 'stomach' and goes on to talk of Tex's 'digestive processes' and keeps reusing these terms. Chapter 8 introduces talk of ...
3
votes
1answer
130 views

How do LaTeX macros interact with the TeX engine?

From wiki on LaTeX the basic requirement is to have a TeX compiler (which is used to generate output files from source), fonts, and the LaTeX macro set. Assuming I have a TeX engine and I ...
4
votes
1answer
297 views

LaTeX structure

I have question about LaTeX structure and how LaTeX works? Is it just a set of macros for TeX? What happens, when I call latex somefile.tex? Does latex just includes somefile into a file, which ...
9
votes
3answers
397 views

How to force LaTeX only commands?

Recently, I learned that for a long time I have been doing all of my mathematics in LaTeX incorrectly! I was using the $ TeX commands instead of the \( and \) LaTeX commands! I immediately went back ...
1
vote
2answers
364 views

Where does LaTeX loose its breath? [closed]

LaTeX is a markup(typesetting) language typically used to typeset books. It has got a huge collection of classes and packages to work with. Now, obviously, LaTeX cannot be compared to Adobe ...
123
votes
10answers
10k views

Why is LaTeX so complicated? [closed]

I have been using LaTeX professionally almost every day for almost 10 years, so I think I can say that, by now, I more or less know what I'm doing. I also do a lot of ordinary computer programming, in ...
1
vote
0answers
188 views

Reference of Latex/Plain Tex control sequences [closed]

I'm looking for a reference of the control sequences defined in Latex and plain Tex similar to this one for the build-in primitives. The Texbook states that there are about 600 macros in plain Tex. ...
6
votes
1answer
440 views

Is there a language standard (ISO, ANSI, …) for LaTeX?

Coming from the C/C++ world, I am used to a standardized language. There are differenct standards, such as ISO or ANSI C. Is there a language standard for LaTeX? (Syntax, keywords, ...)
160
votes
23answers
8k views

Are there any open research problems in the world of TeX?

For a year-long capstone project in computer science, I have to do some 'original research.' I'm still not entirely sure what this entails, but it just struck me that perhaps I can do research and ...
24
votes
2answers
518 views

Will LaTeX work on any TeX?

As I understand it, latex is simply a macro package for tex, as in tex the program, not the format. (Again, weird, but I understand LaTeX to be a format of TeX.) Does this imply that LaTeX the ...
0
votes
1answer
835 views

What is the main difference between command latex, tex, pdflatex, pdftex … and all the other commands? [duplicate]

I am new to TeX world, and I use pdfLatex very often. But sometimes pdfLatex do not work. So I begin to wonder what the difference between all these tex commands. Please give me some guiding ...
58
votes
2answers
2k views

If LaTeX is only a macro package, why does it have its own executable?

From other answers on this site and the FAQ of the TeX User Group my understanding is that: TeX is the original typesetting program, written by Knuth Omega, eTeX, pdfTeX, XeTeX, LuaTeX are engines. ...
3
votes
3answers
304 views

How exactly are TeX and LaTeX related? [duplicate]

I know that plain TeX is the low-level typographical language that describes nearly every aspect of presentation, taking care of things like paragraph breaks, new pages, and the like. I know (well, ...
8
votes
5answers
421 views

What sequence of documents should I read to know “all of” TeX and then LaTeX?

I know that there are a already number of questions on this site about good instructional (La)TeX materials for users at different levels. What I am interested in, though, is what set of documents ...
5
votes
0answers
215 views

How would (La)TeX be different if it had been created recently? [closed]

If Knuth/Lamport/anyone else had created a typesetting system with the flexibility and power of TeX, using everything we have learned about computation and programming languages in the last 35 years, ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Including a PDF for dvi output

I want to include a multipage-pdf in latex and get .dvi output. I know \include{pdfpages} only works with pdfLaTeX. I can't convert PDF to .eps since it is multi-page. I want to have .dvi output with ...
95
votes
8answers
28k views

Why are there no alternatives to TeX, or, why is TeX still used? [closed]

I'm fairly new to TeX and LaTeX, having been drawn in by the Big Idea — creating a document programmatically. However, my experience of TeX (and its libraries — LaTeX, ConTeXt, …) has been almost ...
21
votes
6answers
1k views

LaTeX Markup Options?

I was wondering what prevented the implementation of a MarkDown system in (La)TeX? I know that pandoc does a conversion of MarkDown with extra features to LaTeX. I also know that many are happy with ...
24
votes
1answer
3k views

What are the differences between TeX counts and LaTeX counters?

The title already states the whole question. It has been answered by Joseph Wright at http://www.texdev.net/2009/11/17/tex-counts-and-latex-counters/, but I have not seen the according answer here at ...
111
votes
7answers
32k views

What is the difference between TeX and LaTeX?

I know LaTeX and I've heard that LaTeX is a set of macros in TeX. But what does it exactly mean?
30
votes
5answers
962 views
4
votes
2answers
188 views

Are xelatex, pdflatex, … compilers?

I am just asking for the terminology here. I know the technical details of what pdflatex, xelatex and similiar software really is. But how would you describe that? a "compiler"? does it "compile" ...