I was wondering if it would be a good idea to learn LaTeX for writing my graduate thesis. It would be helpful for me if you answer the following questions (any extra advice will be welcome).

The questions are:

  1. Is it possible to import charts that i have in Open office, excel, etc?

  2. Is there a special version of latex for writing mathematical formulas?

  3. Is there any advice before being involved with it?

  4. Do you know about webpages with simple tutorials?

  1. Yes, graphs in several graphics formats including jpg, pdf, and png can be include using \includegraphics of the graphicx package. But your graphs will look a lot better if you'd use the pgfplots package and create the graphs using that; pgfplots can read csv files.

  2. All versions of LaTeX handle mathematical formulas. There are WYSIWYG tools like Lyx, but I would not recommend them. With modern editors like texstudio, texshop, and the like, one has the source in one window and the pdf output in another.

  3. Lots. For a thesis, the memoir class is something to consider. Have a look at tikz also for graphics. My favorite packages includemathtools (which loads amsmath) and cleveref.

  4. There are many good references including the `Latex companion' (dead tree book) and https://tobi.oetiker.ch/lshort/lshort.pdf

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    Pgfplots is one tool that can produce nice graphs. But if you already use another tool, make sure to import them in a vector form like pdf. It's not worth learning Pgfplots on top of LaTeX unless you have to learn something to do your graphs. Don't use jpg for anything except photos. Even computer-generated raster graphics should use png. – Chris H May 25 '17 at 8:32

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