I have an exam coming up next Monday. We are allowed to bring a sheet of paper with information of our choosing written on it. To my disappointment, it is required to be handwritten. Over the years, I have developed a distinct distaste for my own handwriting.

So before mustering the necessary resolve to create something ugly with pen and paper, I decided to first check out what options there are to make a LaTeX document look as handwritten as possible. And by the way, I really mean handwritten by an ordinary respectable human being, not some Cthulhu-worshipping gibbering madman, unhinged by the horrors he has witnessed.

Bonus requirement (perhaps this also helps to distinguish this question from others): If possible, I'd like this to work with online LaTeX distributions such as ShareLaTeX.

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    Well, if I were the teacher and found out you have printed notes, I'd consider it cheating even if the notes are in a font that emulates handwriting. ;-) – egreg Feb 5 '16 at 15:25
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    Your instructor might not allow this solution, should he discover what you have done. Consider asking him for an exception to his rule. Perhaps he will be pleased that you know LaTeX. – Ethan Bolker Feb 5 '16 at 15:25
  • @EthanBolker I did. Unfortunately, he said no. Something about it being an unfair advantage if he made exceptions to that rule after the fact. Not sure why it would be unfair. He could lift the rule altogether. It's not like anyone starts writing those sheets anytime sooner than the night before the exam... Also, I don't think knowing LaTeX is that big a deal anymore. – Casimir Feb 5 '16 at 15:30
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    @Casimir In that case I endorse the project, that looks very much like procrastination! – egreg Feb 5 '16 at 15:35
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    Hermann Zapf designed the euler math font to emulate the handwriting of a (very neat) mathematics professor at the chalkboard. – musarithmia Feb 5 '16 at 16:19

Use xelatex of course, along with a cursive font (there's plenty free online).

Warning: This might not be sufficient, it still looks too "clean" and the lines too straight for it to be actually handwritten.1

enter image description here


\setmainfont{Cursive standard}


1: That is unless you draw lines with a pencil, write, and then delete the lines.

  • I know I said it's a bonus requirement but isn't there anything that will work with ShareLaTeX? – Casimir Feb 5 '16 at 16:49
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    @Casimir It should work with it, try using this guide: Using your favourite fonts with ShareLaTeX. Although it'd be a lot easier if you just downloaded the font and compiled locally. :D – Alenanno Feb 5 '16 at 16:51
  • That's great. Didn't know about that. – Casimir Feb 5 '16 at 17:09

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