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I am a beginner to TeX and LaTeX. (Though I have used Softcover a little bit, which uses LaTeX under the hood and accepts some LaTeX commands, and I am very experienced with multiple flavors of markdown.)

I have a multi-page, multi-section checklist that is currently very nicely formatted in InDesign. I would very much like to transition it to a fully open source workflow.

I know I will have a lot of work to do to accomplish this, but the very first step (from all the tutorials I can find) seems to be choosing the document type.

Unfortunately, none of the document types I've found mentioned seem to fit. What I'm writing isn't an article, or a book, or a letter.

So my question is: Is there a document type that is appropriate for this type of checklist?

And a secondary question: If there isn't such a document type that's a perfect fit, what are the tradeoffs I will have to deal with in using various other document types to produce this checklist, i.e., which document type fits best?

(Or would I actually be better off writing my own document class, even though that seems like a tremendous hurdle?)


It seems like a good, informed answer will require more info about how this checklist is structured, so I'll describe that in some detail here. (I know that TeX keeps the structure distinct from the formatting, so I'm trying to just describe the general structure.)

The checklist has a header on the first page with the name of the checklist and similar information, then it has a space for various information to be filled out for the particular instance of using the checklist (e.g. name of person doing the checklist, date, etc.), and some additional introductory information to be read by the person using the checklist. This intro information spills over onto the second page.

After that intro information, there is a numbered and named section header for each section of the checklist itself (bolded, in the middle of the page, although I know that's formatting info, not structure). After each section header there is a specially formatted "objective" paragraph for that section of the checklist, and then the numbered checklist steps begin.

Some of the checklist steps are "substeps" of other checklist steps. Nearly all have "signoff" lines over to the right from the steps themselves, but there are a few exceptions to this. Some of the signoff lines are specially marked indicating that an inspector or supervisor needs to mark that line off, rather than the person doing the checklist marking it off himself.

At the end of the entire checklist there is another special section with form-type information to be filled in (e.g. date completed and so forth).

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    Use article. Document classes are not necessarily tied to one specific purpose. article is one of the most basic things to start with, so you should try it out. – TeXnician Oct 23 '19 at 20:38
  • @TeXnician, okay, thanks! This is a "between other things" project, so it may take me a while, but once I get something workable I'll self-answer if there's no other answer in the meantime. – Wildcard Oct 23 '19 at 20:40
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    Where can we see an example of those check-lists? – Bernard Oct 23 '19 at 21:26
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    Depending on how you would like your check list to look like, tex.stackexchange.com/a/247688/134144 might be helpful. – leandriis Oct 23 '19 at 21:26
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    I'd write a parasitic class which loads article and adds twiddly bits for checklist-making. Since you are newish to LaTeX, I'd start by just writing a document for it using article directly and then turn it into a class later. It sounds relatively straightforward. enumitem, possibly tabulars, maybe tcolorbox (if the specially formatted paragraphs are flashy boxes) or efbox (if they are unflashy boxes) or something else (if they aren't boxes). If the checklist will be used in electronic form, hyperref. – cfr Oct 23 '19 at 23:16

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