{typography} is the art and technique of arranging type, type design, and modifying type glyphs.

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Should subscripts in math mode be upright?

In one-letter subscripts, like $x_i$, the subscript is usually typeset italic. Is this the typographically right thing to do? Consider this case: The Boltzmann constant is often written as $k_B$, ...
29
votes
2answers
747 views

Ensure minimal length of last line

This question led to a new feature in a package: impnattypo One rule in French typography is that the last line of a paragraph should not be shorter than the double of the indentation of the ...
29
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2answers
1k views

How to visualize the underfull box in final output PDF files

I am finalizing a document. There are a few underfull vbox I just cannot figure out where they are. Sometimes it is easy to figure out which page is underfull vbox from the log file, but sometimes it ...
29
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2answers
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Should I load microtype with pdflatex?

Should I always load the microtype package with pdflatex? Could it produce unwanted effects a naive user (like me) might ignore? Are there any known issues as for compatibility with other packages? ...
28
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5answers
2k views

Which packages can you use to improve the typographic quality?

List here which packages can be used to make text easier to read and nicer to look at. After all, the superior typographic quality is one of the main reasons to prefer LaTeX to, for example, MS Word.
28
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4answers
520 views

Where do I place floats in the source?

I realize that this is an embarrassing simple question. Shall I put the floats, e.g. \begin{figure} . . \end{figure} in the source immediately after first reference? or wait until the end of the ...
27
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3answers
7k views

Professional-looking tables with alternating row colors?

Both the Booktabs documentation and the Small Guide to Making Nice Tables provide some nice rules-of-thumb for making professional-looking tables (e.g., no double rules, no vertical rules, etc.) Q: ...
27
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4answers
529 views

Any suggestions/requests for features for a new package that allows disabling ligatures for (pre)selected words?

I'm starting to put together a LaTeX package, which I hope to distribute broadly, that provides lualatex code to disable ligation of character pairs and triplets for selected words (globally within ...
26
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2answers
1k views

Is there a way to automatically change kerning between commas/full stops and footnote marks?

This question led to a new package: fnpct Following up on my question on the kerning of footnote marks after punctuation marks, I'd like to know if there is a way to achieve the kerning of ...
26
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2answers
3k views

Why exactly is \linespread{1.05} appropriate for Palatino?

Section 1.4 of l2tabu, Changing inter-line space using \baselinestretch, contains a remark about the Palatino font: [I]f you only want to use fonts other than Computer Modern you may use ...
25
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3answers
2k views

Ligatures: why “fi”, but not “fj” as well?

My university name is "FJFI", with e-mail/web addresses containing lowercase "fjfi". Then "fi" gets ligatured whereas "fj" does not, and the result looks a bit strange. My question is, which ...
24
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3answers
682 views

Strange default exponent positioning?

Why is this red exponent so far away from the right parenthesis? To my eye it is too far away. \documentclass{article} \usepackage{xcolor} \begin{document} ...
24
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2answers
852 views

Italics emphasis and punctuation [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should I include punctuation marks in \emph, or should I place those marks after the command? When emphasizing the last part of a sentence by making it italic, is it ...
24
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3answers
619 views

Are there typographical systems that allow creating text which isn't always uniform?

I was reading another question on this site, and this was a sample of a cursive font from that discussion: I really like it, but immediately noticed that it could not have been written by a human, ...
24
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1answer
436 views

Evaluate typographical beauty of a document (widow, orphans, hyphens, etc) in order to optimize the page geometry

When finalizing documents, one of the last things I do is usually to play with the page geometry to improve the overall layout: get rid of a few orphans or widows, reduce the number of hyphenations, ...
23
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3answers
565 views

Should I include punctuation marks in \emph, or should I place those marks after the command?

I wonder if I should place punctuation marks directly after the \emph{} command, or should I include those marks within the curly brackets? Thus: The languages only differ in their \emph{grammar}, ...
23
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3answers
3k views

Best ratios of number of letters per line and of number of lines per page

I am actually writing a master thesis in LaTeX but I didn't really like the default page style of the document style book. Therefore I tried to make my own page style and I resized manually the ...
23
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5answers
2k views

What can you tell me about poster design and typography in LaTeX?

Are there any packages that would be useful for large (1m x 1m) posters? Leaving the typography to the professionals would be useful if there are such things as large format guidelines for typography. ...
23
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4answers
594 views

Is there a special hyphen-symbol to be used between capital letters?

In words consisting of small letters, the - hyphen seems right. In words (abbreviations, acronyms) consisting of capital letters, the common hyphen appears (at least imho) to be placed too low and to ...
23
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2answers
986 views

Ligature suppression with proper hyphenation and comprehensive word list?

[Update: It's been pointed out that my question(s) here weren't clear (or were too hidden). So I inserted red stars at the points where the questions appear.] In The TeX Book, D.E.K. gives "shelfful" ...
22
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4answers
1k views

The finer points of typographical priorities

Inspired by the question Vertical spacing, pagination and ideal results I started to wonder what are the priorities for typographical rules (/norms). For example, which is worse: an orphan, or a ...
22
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2answers
778 views

Repetition of a word on two lines

This question led to a new feature in a package: impnattypo There have been questions about rivers asked in the past. I'm wondering about words that are repeated in the same place on two ...
22
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5answers
4k views

Why are URLs typeset with monospace fonts by default?

When typesetting URLs in LaTeX using the url package, they are set in a mono space font by default. While I just accepted that as a fact for a long time, I am now starting to wonder why? In Browsers, ...
22
votes
1answer
367 views

microtype and the French way of typing text

In French, we put spaces before characters : ! ; ? when we type the text. For instance, we will type Que fait-on ? On met un espace avant les deux points : comme cela. If I do so and use microtype, ...
22
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1answer
7k views

Should you put citations before or after interpunction?

This probably also could go to English.SE, but I'm not sure. When I want to cite a source for a complete sentence, you put the citation before or after the period? And if you cite for a word, or ...
21
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1answer
231 views

Environments for visually setting text apart

I have a document consisting of alternating paragraphs from different voices. Because the paragraph blocks look too much alike, I need some way to give the different parts a different look. I have ...
20
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3answers
922 views

Which Unicode fonts are available with grades/optical sizes comparable to Donald Knuth's awesome eight grades in Computer Modern Roman?

Which Unicode fonts are available with grades/optical sizes comparable to Donald Knuth's awesome eight grades in Computer Modern Roman? It would be great to get at least 3 options! This question is ...
20
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3answers
11k views

Correct use of \paragraph titles?

How should I use \paragraph? I mean, If I want to put "Characteristics", should I put \paragraph{Characteristics} or \paragraph{Characteristics:}. Or is it up to me which one to use?
20
votes
1answer
294 views

How to I force a word to move to the end of the line?

How do I force my document to pull selected words to the end of each line (and to hyphenate them as well, if needed)? I have an old document. I know the page size and I think I've found the ...
20
votes
1answer
314 views

Are there any typographical improvements planned for LaTeX3?

I have read a few posts about the changes to LaTeX in the upcoming "version", are there planned any changes to how LaTeX renders typography? Regarding kerning, spacing and all the "fancy" things ...
20
votes
1answer
230 views

Hyphenating words with archaic spellings

I often work with texts from the 17- to 1800s that (in addition to now obsolete words) contain familiar words in slightly different spelling. The language of these texts, and of the ones I'm writing, ...
20
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1answer
571 views

Elisions in mathematics

Knuth incorporated many of the typographical rules for mathematics in the TeX engine. However some rules were left out. One such case is the use of elisions in equations. Sometimes \cdots are used and ...
20
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0answers
262 views

Tests for checking kerning and sidebearings

To test the kerning and sidebearings of digital fonts, Bringhurst suggests the following methods: To check the sidebearings typeset consecutive pairs of letters and check the symmetry. For the ...
19
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3answers
1k views

Typesetting email address

I have found this answer by Will Robertson on how to typeset an email address: \documentclass{article} \usepackage{color,hyperref} \catcode`\_=11\relax \newcommand\email[1]{\_email #1\q_nil} ...
19
votes
3answers
975 views

Source of “correct” baselinestretch values for various fonts?

I once encountered the advice to use \renewcommand\baselinestretch{1.025} after \usepackage{bera} (though I am not 100% certain that 1.025 was the suggested value). There's little doubt to my ...
19
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3answers
599 views

Visually highlighting symbolic material

I have a diagram in which I need to indicate the difference between symbolic mathematics and English words (potentially to someone who doesn't know about it): Colour works beautifully for making ...
19
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4answers
2k views

How to typeset telephone numbers properly?

What is the proper way to typeset a telephone number? The number would be of the format: Country-local-number-appendix For example: +31 6 21123234 5 (If these are the proper english terms...)
19
votes
1answer
391 views

Indicating matching brackets/parentheses in TeX output

I often have cause to typeset things like this in TeX: When reading expressions like the one above, it's very difficult to tell which brackets match each other. I'd like to be able to define ...
19
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1answer
356 views

Is there a trick to beautify bibliography?

I'm using the memoir and biblatex packages together. In general, I'm very happy with both. However, in my bibliography, I get some overflows and I don't have any clue how to avoid them... are there ...
18
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3answers
3k views

Illogical twoside margins

Shouldn't the twoside option produce a wider margin at the binding/spine edge, rather than the other way around? I'm using \documentclass[twoside]{report}.
18
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3answers
1k views

Does LaTeX automatically change fonts when switching between Title, Author, Date, and Body Text or sizes modifiers?

I have a question regarding the inner workings of the system. Let us assume that I am using the article class. I cannot help but notice that the title seems to have a different look than the body ...
18
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4answers
842 views

What measure can we use by LaTeX to control the print budget

I found there are so much excellent answer to questions about how to product high quality typesetting output. But I wonder how to save ink with LaTeX. What we need to think about to manage cost. page ...
18
votes
2answers
552 views

typesetting in the style of Turing's famous “ON COMPUTABLE NUMBERS”

Maybe an unusual question but I love the typographical style of this text. http://classes.soe.ucsc.edu/cmps210/Winter11/Papers/turing-1936.pdf I am an art student writing a research paper. I would ...
18
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5answers
6k views

Typesetting with Inch Symbols and Sizes in Inches

I'd be much obliged if somebody could tell me how to do the following. How does one typeset the symbol for inches in LaTeX? Is it "?. Neither Lamport nor Knuth seem to mention it. Assuming ...
18
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3answers
899 views

Typesetting a dictionary containing pictures

I am seeking advice (any ideas) how to typeset a bilingual dictionary that will contain many pictures. The picture below shows the dictionary. Problems: The lines in columns differ. The spaces ...
18
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2answers
1k views

Vertical spacing, pagination and ideal results

I found that the best way to avoid widows and orphans is setting penalties and using rubber lengths between paragraphs, for instance, \setlength{\parskip}{1pt plus 1pt minus 1pt}. When I shared this ...
18
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3answers
3k views

Listings, Literate Programming, and Beautiful Typography

Now that I'm procrastinating with tweaking LaTeX, instead of finishing my Ph.D. thesis, I'm wondering what's the most beautiful way to typeset source code (C#, C++, LISP, XML, BNF) in LaTeX. ...
18
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1answer
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Spacing around image

Knuth is on record that he incorporated approximately 100 typographical rules in TeX. I am struggling to discover the balance. Consider the figure below, What should be the amount of space around ...
17
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4answers
4k views

Text upside-down, characters rotated along baseline?

I'd like to achieve something like in the picture below: Another example: Note that the text is not simply rotated! I know it could be achieved by boxing each character separately, measuring the ...
17
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5answers
371 views

Why do we use the Latex logo when referring to Latex in text?

It seems standard practice, when typesetting with Latex, to put the Latex logo in the text whenever we are referring to Latex itself (usually through the \LaTeX command). Why do we do this? It's ...