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TeX and LaTeX are widely used in Computer Science. What other academic disciplines or professionals use it?

  • 38
    Should this be community wiki? – ShreevatsaR Aug 3 '10 at 21:06
  • 4
    Yes, definitely. – EricR Aug 4 '10 at 16:56
  • I've never seen TeX or LaTeX (or any variation thereof) used outside of Math or Math-Adjacent (engineering, physics, computer science &c) areas in academia or business. – user4635 Apr 4 '11 at 14:50
  • @user4635: so you should read the posts below. :-) It seems that there are enough others using (La)TeX, even if the majority belongs to the "math-adjacent" fields – MostlyHarmless Apr 11 '11 at 1:52
  • I had thought CS folks use Microsoft WORD, Excel, Indesign, Illustrator, Photoshop and application such as those. I had no idea they use Latex. – Nasser Feb 22 '14 at 23:20

48 Answers 48

9

Video game producer here. I personally create most of documents using LaTeX/pLaTeX (actually most of drafting with Org-mode)

I am also a manager at Sakura-Con, an anime convention, and I use LaTeX to create many of letters (for guest of honor, and staff), too. It is useful as LaTeX can take a command line argument for mail merging purpose.

Both of those are exceptions rather than a norm, though.

8

Bible publishing. I use it to typeset various kinds of Bibles for publishing in various formats. Because of the unique features of Bilingual Bibles one does tend to run into some peculiar limitations once in a while and has to work around them.

  • Do you have any templates you could share? – Dan Aug 8 '13 at 4:25
  • @Dan If you publish Bibles on a not-for-profit basis, I might be able to be of some help. But if you need it for commercial publishing of Bibles we're working on a typesetting system for automation of Bible publishing which 'could' be licensed to customers in the future. – McGafter Aug 12 '13 at 13:49
  • I'm just a techie dude who took a bunch of biblical Greek classes at a seminary for fun who likes to translate a book here and there. In ten years I've pretty much only translated two books - no intentions of publishing or selling my work. – Dan Aug 12 '13 at 14:27
  • To be honest, I'm mostly looking to learn from the templates - I only do one book at a time so I don't really want things like a table of contents and whatnot - I just like seeing how people handle chapters, verses, footnotes, etc. I'd be happy to share my existing template. – Dan Aug 12 '13 at 15:01
  • @Dan If you can find a way to send me your contact details then we can discuss it. – McGafter Aug 12 '13 at 15:13
7

Depends on the university I guess. Here in University of Hull only a few engineering and maths professors use LaTeX, there are no LaTeX classes for thesis nor assignments. The LaTeX installation on the machine is from 2004 and hasn't been updated since.

Over the past 4 years I haven't seen a single PhD student use LaTeX. =(

  • Well, Hull all but obliterated their Maths department a few years back, so somehow I'm not surprised... – José Figueroa-O'Farrill Aug 6 '10 at 15:49
  • @José Figueroa-O'Farrill: The remaining 4, or so, professors got "integrated" into "centre for mathematics" as part of engineering department. – Dima Aug 7 '10 at 6:45
7

I've just started to use LaTeX. After many years of disappointments with word, open office and google docs, I started to use it to write technical manuals for analytical equipment. I found the pgfplots package really amazing and I also love the package chemstyle.

I'm only a bit sad because I've never tried LaTeX before. It would have saved me heaps of time and I would have produced much better looking reports and manuals.

I definitely recommend it for technical manuals!

7

TeX is used for serial letters. I am going to create printed letters, including construction drafts with numbers, barcodes, invoices and business letters with TeX for a small company.

Gemanwings, a German low-cost airline (turnover ~700 mio Euro), sends booking confirmation and invoice in PDF-format by e-mail. The PDFs are created by "pdfTeX-1.10b, LaTeX with hyperref" and the fonts are typical TeX-fonts too.

7

Since learning LaTeX, I've used Word maybe twice. Meeting protocols, motions, seating cards, lab reports, essays, a songbook, some sheet music (Although Lilypad is hard). It shouldn't be a question of which professions can use it, but rather which professions have the privilege of being in contact with someone who can teach them.

6

Bioinformatics researchers use it.

6

I'm a mechanical engineer working in materials science / materials processing. I had lots of experience (from quite good to extremely bad) with Microsoft Office (versions XP and before, also Office:mac) and consider myself a "power user" (at least concerning the versions until Office XP and 2003. Based on that experience I decided, not to write my diploma (master) thesis with Word, but with LaTeX. And I'm currently writing my PhD thesis with LaTeX also.

Some of my colleagues (mostly engineers and chemists) also use(d) LaTeX for typesetting their thesis, but many that I know use MS Word.

Some "statistical" data of people
- which I know,
- remember their name
- and know how they wrote/write their thesis

LaTeX: 7
Framemaker: 1
MS Word: by far too many (7 + many many more that I know)

6

We actually have a colloquium course at my college in which one is required to use LaTeX. It has to be taken once for all math minors, twice for all math majors. The entire object of the course is to learn technical, mathematical writing, for which LaTeX is considered required.

6

I'm a chemist and I use LaTeX. Cgnieder's packages make this a lot easier than previously.

5

I also use LaTeX as a very flexible report-generating tool out of various MySQL databases, with help of a preprocessor, namely pdflatexdb (Hans-Georg Eßer) or nlatexdb (Robin Höns). I tried BIRT or even the Oracle Report tool bundled with OpenOffice.org, but that was a great waste of time, really. Check here : http://hgesser.com/software/latexdb/ and there : http://sourceforge.net/projects/nlatexdb/

4

A lot of the answers given are academic disciplines (and most of those are scientists or related).

I personally have used LaTeX to write my CV. But more interesting, was that I was contacted by a doctor colleague of mine, who was having a little trouble with a document he was preparing on NHS computers. He sent me his source file, and it appears that at least his hospital was using LaTeX to prepare documents providing guidance on the use of certain drugs for treatment of HIV. He mentioned that LaTeX are installed on the hospital computers, and he cannot modify the installations in any way, so I would not be at all surprised if it is at least somewhat commonly used in the medical profession.

I also have a friend who works at a hospital lab who prepared another guidance document using LaTe, after I introduced it to him.

4

I work in IT, and I use TeX to produce professional looking reports. I started with LaTeX in college in a math class, and I've been using it for various things since. I also use it for a few personal projects as well.

4

At least one parasitologist, some day attracted by the synergy of LaTeX + R, but now using LaTeX for any type of non collaborative documents, even to simulate some horrendous Word's forms when writing directly over the original template with any word processor become a nightmare.

3

I know people using it in Life Sciences, Geography, Philosophy, History and Archaeology.

It is mostly used in these disciplines to write big manuscripts, like thesis, books. Rarely it is used for articles as many journals ask for Word documents instead.

  • LaTeX is introduced in humanities more and more, especially in gets more common in Archaeology, since citing got easier (thanks to archaeologie). – LukasCB May 22 '16 at 11:51
3

Probably an outlier, but as an accountant I use LaTeX to produce some reports and financial statements. I've had a number of people comment favourably on how the pdfs look.

Started using LaTeX originally to write up a thesis.

2

Graphic Designers.

I use (La)TeX for any automatable manipulation or examination of .pdfs:

  • measure ad sizes and export them to a spreadsheet for verification
  • set ads to the correct size
  • concatenate .pdfs for printing or distribution
  • variable data printing / typesetting
  • interactive ad design using LaTeX as the typesetting back-end and a web page tied into a CMS as the front-end
1

I am a gynecologist and I use LateX for making:

  • Ultrasound reports
  • Medical reports
  • Medical prescriptions

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