# [scribus] Is Scribus of No Practical Use to Engineers, Scientists and Mathematicians?

Gregory Pittman gregp_ky at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 23 19:36:45 CEST 2009

On 08/23/2009 10:06 AM, Professor Rodney Coates wrote:
> Dear Owen,
>
> I have been able to download and install Ghostscript, so an initial
> Ghostscript error message on starting Scribus now no longer appears. I
> do not know if Ghostcript has some part to play in Tex utilisation.
>
> I have downloaded BasicTex for Mac and installed that also. However,
> when I click the Tex icon on the menubar, all I get is a message
>
> The item "pdflatex -- interactive nonstopmode failed to start"
>
> This is one of those error messages which really ought to bring scorn
> and derision on the programmer who implemented it. There is no point
> in providing meaningless error messages when the software is intended
> or presumed to have a wide and general use.
>
> Error messages ought to convey some meaningful instruction which can
> be acted on to the benefit of the user.
>
it may be that you don't have pdflatex...
> Anyway, now I am back at square one. Clicking Tex - apart from
> producing the above error message - generates a text entry frame with
> handles on it,  within which is a further message: "render error".
> Pretty well useless, again, since it only states the obvious, that the
> software is not working, at least insofar as Tex/Latex is concerned.
>
> Maybe you have some thoughts on these matters.
>
> I have now also downloaded MathType and have it working in Page. I can
> type in equations - WISYWIG - which is brilliant. I can transfer pict
> images of the equations to Ragtime, so can procede there.
>
> In RagTime I can change symbol fonts within a line of text so I can
> write things like "..... the symbol used for wavelength is the greek
> letter L ...... and L will come out as the proper lambda glyph.
> HOEWEVER, Symbol font DOES NOT WORK with this mail application, which
> is why L is L and NOT lambda. It does not work in Page, It does not
> work in TextEdit and it does not - of course - work in Scribus.
>
> Symbol font does work in both Illustrator and Photoshop.
>
> I also now notice that in Illustrator (but not in any of the other
> non-Adobe applications, TWO Symbol fonts are present, one followed by
> a TT (TrueType symbol and the other by a red lowercase cursive "a"
> presumably an "Adobe" symbol. Much the same in Photoshop.
>
> For completeness, I have also just activated Word for Mac and that
> works fine, but with only a single Symbol font in the long fonts list.
>
> Perhaps we might short-circuit things if I ask the following question.
> Even if I could get LaTex working, presumably I will never be able to
> insert a Greek character in a string of ordinary text? That is, within
> a sentence.
It's a matter of using the right LaTeX markup. Within some line of text,
you could have, for example, $\mu$ and you will get the Greek mu
character. The \$'s put you in "math mode" so that this kind of symbol
command is accessible. LaTeX has a highly developed math mode, with
great ease of generating formulas, equations, and various math symbols.

John Culleton's comments notwithstanding, I use a simple text editor
rather than an WYSIWYG software.

I don't think this is such an OT thread, since with the advent of
Scribus versions 1.3.5+ we now have Render Frames, which can, among
other possibilities handle LaTeX inside Scribus. There are many
instances where working on your LaTeX outside of Scribus, then copying
to a Render Frame makes the most sense. Who knows, maybe some day, we'll
even have JC using Scribus for more than covers.

Greg