LaTeX programming

LaTeX is a free doc typesetting software program, used for writing scientific and technical paperwork. LaTeX offers knowledgeable look to paperwork and offers many packages that may assist programmers format textual content in a approach that might in any other case not be potential with the same old textual content formatting software program.

Not like most technical writing software program or documentation instruments like Microsoft Phrase that depend on a What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editor, LaTeX, as an alternative, makes use of LaTeX instructions to enter and output content material. The TeX engine then takes care of changing these instructions right into a PDF doc.

On this technical writing tutorial, you’ll be taught some widespread LaTeX instructions that can enable you create your personal LaTeX paperwork.

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Methods to Set up LaTeX

Putting in LaTeX is pretty easy. From the terminal, merely sort the command beneath to start set up:

sudo apt-get set up texlive

Subsequent, you’ll be able to verify that you’ve got put in LaTeX by checking for the model, getting into the next command:

LaTeX -v # 


LaTeX --version

Methods to Write Your First LaTeX Doc

To start writing your first LaTeX doc, create a file that ends with the .tex extension. You should use any textual content editor of your alternative, similar to Notepad or Notepad++.

On the primary line of your file, declare the documentclass. It is a command that defines the kind of doc you’re going to write. Discover that the command begins with a ahead slash (). That is the overall syntax for writing a LaTeX command:


After the command,chances are you’ll optionally have curly brackets {}, the place you’ll be able to declare information. There are a variety of doc sorts you’ll be able to select from, together with an article or guide. The doc sort determines how content material shall be typeset on the doc.

Right here is a few primary pattern instructions for creating an article sort doc in LaTeX:

   My First LaTeX Doc!

Subsequent, embody some phrases between the start{doc} and finish{doc} tags. This constitutes the physique of your doc. The part earlier than the physique is known as the preamble and it’s used to set specifics such because the doc class and packages.

The following step is compilation. To compile your code, run the command beneath:

$ pdfLaTeX firstDoc.tex # exchange firstDoc with the identify of your tex file

This can output a .PDF doc known as firstDoc.pdf within the present listing. You possibly can open this file out of your terminal utilizing the evince command:

$ evince firstDoc.pdf

You may as well open the file utilizing any .PDF reader of your alternative.

The next is an inventory of a number of the doc sorts – also called doc courses – accessible in LaTeX:

  • article: Used for articles featured in scientific journals, quick stories, displays, and likewise for software program documentation
  • IEEEtran: Used for articles utilizing the IEEE Transaction for.
  • report: Used for lengthy stories, small books, thesis papers, and paperwork containing a number of chapters.
  • guide: Used for precise books.
  • slides: Used to create slides.
  • letter: Used when creating letters or notes.

Sizing Fonts and Styling Textual content in LaTeX

Programmers can set the font measurement of their textual content in LaTeX by together with the dimensions worth in [ ] brackets after the documentclass command. For instance:


The above LaTeX command would create textual content that’s 14pt in measurement.

To make your textual content daring or italicized, builders can use emp (or textbf) for daring and textit for italics. To underline textual content, use the underline command.

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Setting Title, Creator, and Date in LaTeX

To set the title, writer, or date of your doc, use the next instructions, respectively: title, writer, or date. To ensure that these attributes to indicate up, it’s essential use the maketitle command in your doc’s physique.

Right here is an instance of easy methods to set the title, writer, and date in a LaTeX doc utilizing maketitle:

title{My LaTeX Doc}
writer{Michael Jenkins}
date{June 2025}
It is a PDF doc created utilizing LaTeX code.

Methods to Construction a LaTeX Doc

To incorporate an summary in your LaTeX doc, place it between the next tags:


To create a brand new line, you’ll be able to both use or newline.

To create a brand new part and chapters, you need to use the tags beneath:

part{Part Title}
subsection{Subsection Title}
part*{Unnumbered Part}

Right here is an instance exhibiting easy methods to absolutely construction a LaTeX doc, together with easy methods to outline its documentclass:





This defines the supposed use of the doc. It summarizes the purpose of the doc.
Ensure that it's transient and straight to the purpose.
subsection{Definitions, Acronyms, and Abbreviations}


part*{Unnumbered Part}


To output a desk of contents, it’s essential add the tableofcontents tag in your doc’s physique.

Documenting Algorithms in LaTeX

First, let’s have a look at easy methods to add packages to LaTeX. To import a package deal, accomplish that by utilizing the usepackage{package-name} command within the doc preamble.

Generally a package deal could not already be downloaded along with your default LaTeX set up. Let’s take use an instance of the algorithm2e package deal which you, as a developer, can use to jot down algorithms.

This package deal might be downloaded from the CTAN (Complete TEX Archive Community) repository. Merely seek for the package deal within the search bar after which obtain the offered .ZIP archive. Extract the package deal and find the .sty file (on this case algorithm2e.sty).

Copy this file to the listing of your .tex file (the listing the place you’ll be importing this package deal). Now, you’ll be able to freely import this package deal with none compilation errors.

Right here is a few pattern code exhibiting easy methods to use the algorithm2e package deal in LaTeX:

eIf{$val[0] > $val[1]}
   tmp[0] = val[1]
   tmp[1] = val[0]
   tmp[0] = val[0]
   tmp[1] = val[1]}
eIf{$val[2] > $val[3]}{
   tmp[2] = val[3]
   tmp[3] = val[2]
   tmp[2] = val[2]
   tmp[3] = val[3]}

Last Ideas on Technical Writing with LaTeX

LaTeX is a robust typesetting software program that means that you can create varied varieties of technical paperwork, starting from mathematical docs to algorithms. From the examples on this tutorial, you must be capable to confidently create, write, and format LaTeX paperwork.

Learn: Methods to Create a Modern Wanting Resume Utilizing LaTeX.

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