[scribus] Dumb newbie question

John Culleton john at wexfordpress.com
Tue Mar 31 19:40:42 CEST 2009

On Monday 30 March 2009 01:43:55 pm John Jason Jordan wrote:
> On Mon, 30 Mar 2009 09:40:04 -0400
> Gregory Pittman <gpittman at iglou.com> dijo:
> > John Jason Jordan wrote:
> > > That is extremely interesting. My formulas are
> > > simple, but doing them in OOo is problematic due to
> > > bugs. (The font bugs that cause many characters not
> > > to appear if bold or italic are selected.)
> > >
> > > However, I know zero about TeX, and I don't have a
> > > couple months of my life to spend learning it. Would
> > > it be possible just to learn how to do the formulas I
> > > need. I'm guessing that it wouldn't take too long to
> > > learn the syntax I'd need.
> >
> > There should be some easy to find resources re: LaTeX
> > commands.
> > ftp://ftp.ams.org/pub/tex/doc/amsmath/short-math-guide.
> >pdf for example.
> I looked at the PDF, but it doesn't have enough examples.
> My reluctance to take the time to learn it is because I
> only ever need one type of formula. It's a lot of work to
> learn the whole Latex thing just to do one kind of
> formula. This is all I need:
> [ sometext   ]
> [ moretext   ]
> [ moreagain ]
> Where the brackets are stretched to enclose the text
> items. And sometimes I might need to nest two or more
> such brackets inside braces. I never ever need real math
> formulas because I am not writing math stuff, so all the
> options are a waste of time to learn. If I knew I was
> going to live to 200 years old it might be fun to take
> the time to learn it. :)
> It only took me a couple hours to figure out how to do it
> in OOo. I was hoping the Scribus TEX thing would be as
> simple, but it requires too much learning of stuff I
> don't need. It's overkill for me.
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TeX has several variants. LaTeX is one. In all TeX variants 
the method for creating formulas is the same.  IMO the 
Scribus developers could have used plain pdftex instead of 
LaTeX or pdflatex and eliminated a lot of unnecessary 
complexity. But what is done is done. 

There is an old but very user friendly document called "A 
Gentle Introduction to TeX".  Pages 33--47 cover all the 
math stuff.  Download it here:

John Culleton
Able Indexers and Typesetters

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