I am doing a typography assignment in School where we have to take a random text and then format it to be "typographically correct". Most students use Microsoft Word but I chose to use LaTeX (thought it would be easier). I have finished the task but now my teacher requires us to fill in a paper that states the different values used in the document for different section of the text (font size for [title, sections, text], baseline spacing [title, section, text], spacing for title and sections, Fonts used etc. I left almost every setting at default and I used the "book" document class. I can't seem to find the default values for anything in LaTeX. The only things I have found is the default font for text (Computer Modern Roman) and the font size for text (11pt).

EDIT: This is the beginning of my document:


\fancyhead[LE,RO]{My name\\The future of Virtual Reality}


\title{The future of Virtual Reality}
\author{My name}
\date{June 2017}

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    I am a bit skeptical about this. A typography course will be advocating using MS Word? Right click in Adobe Acrobat for the fonts used. – percusse Oct 2 '17 at 12:24
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    The request is silly. Redo your work in Word and leave it alone. – egreg Oct 2 '17 at 13:10
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    You can do \the\baselineskip or \showthe\baselineskip to get its value. – Ulrike Fischer Oct 2 '17 at 13:14
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    If you need a response QUICKLY it is best not to use a forum where you are getting help from people in their free time, and it's best not to SHOUT. – David Carlisle Oct 2 '17 at 13:24
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    @Schytheron The silliest thing about the request is the idea that there is any "correct" answer to a question like "is this document typographically correct." Since when have all printed books been formatted in the one "correct" way, for example????? – alephzero Oct 2 '17 at 15:52

The definitions of the default values are a bit spread out: the font size definitions for option 11pt can be found in a file called size11.clo. The definitions for commands like \chapter, \section, or \title are found in the corresponding class file, in your case book.cls. At last you may need to look up definitions of \@setfontsize, \fontsize and commands like \@xviipt (found in latex.ltx).

The following small file shows at least some of the values:





\section*{font size settings in \texttt{book.cls} with option
  \texttt{1\@ptsize pt}}

  \renewcommand\@setfontsize[3]{\cs#1: font size #2pt, leading #3pt}
  \item \tiny
  \item \scriptsize
  \item \footnotesize (footnotes)
  \item \small
  \item \normalsize (normal text)
  \item \large (\cs\subsection)
  \item \Large (\cs\section)
  \item \LARGE (\cs\title)
  \item \huge
  \item \Huge (\cs\chapter)


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The manual of the memoir class also has a table which lists the default values (rounded to whole pts):

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BTW: as others have said in the comments already: there is no way to determine what “typographically correct” means. This depends on the form of the document (is it going to be a letter (a formal one? or an informal one?), or an article in a newspaper, a book, a leaflet, … It may also depend on the text contents (say you want to design an invitation card: do you invite to a birthday (yours? the one of your baby child?) or to a wedding or a funeral?). And then there still is the personal taste of the document designer… Hopefully your professor gave you some context. Otherwise you may well take the random text and design it as a “typographically correct” commercial flyer.

  • I dont know where others in this post got the idea that I was asking how to write a "typographically correct" text. All I wanted to know was how to find the default values for parameters in LaTeX haha. Thanks for the answer by the way. – Schytheron Oct 3 '17 at 12:25
  • @Schytheron I don't think you gave that impression. Not to me at least. :) I still think the assignment “take a random text and then format it to be "typographically correct"” is not solvable – or rather: solvable in hundreds of different ways, but that's certainly not your fault :) – clemens Oct 3 '17 at 12:29

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