Reading that made me feel quite nostalgic. I miss using LaTeX, but I can’t see myself going back to it. It’s a great way to write for print but I’m doing that less and less in recent years. I find Markdown a bit less enjoyable than LaTeX but a more suitable option when the aim is to produce a format like HTML or ePub.

One factor is that I’m no longer submitting my writing to scholarly journals. Even when I was doing so, these were journals in the fields of English literature and history, and I don’t think they were as well prepared as their scientific counterparts to accept manuscripts in LaTeX.

I used to see a lot of software manuals that had been authored in LaTeX or some similar document preparation tool. It always struck me that they were too inclined to display their structures on the outside, particularly in the table of contents. Obviously, an author or an editor must be aware of the document’s structure but it seems to me that a reader may prefer not to be — it can be a distraction. And, while it’s possible to suppress the section and subsection numbering, this often isn’t done. I can see there are good reasons why it shouldn’t be — for one thing, those numbers make it easier to cross-reference — but I think it can often feel just a little too insistent.

But I enjoyed remembering the pleasure of writing in LaTeX. Thanks for the reminder that it’s still an option.

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Writer of (mainly short) fiction, criticism/discussion and other stuff; aphantasic; antimasculine male, no pronoun preference https://www.artkavanagh.ie

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