Short Math Guide on CTAN

The Short Math Guide for LaTeX is now available on CTAN. It has been significantly updated, contains more up-to-date information and additional notes such as about discouraged syntax and new recommendations. From 17 pages it grew to 21 pages. Furthermore, the source code of the document is now available. It covers all math basics and is a very efficient guide for the smart reader.

Here you can find it:

News: TUG membership in 2017

The rates for electronic membership (TUGboat and TeX software online, no paper/DVD) decreased: it’s now $15 for students, seniors and TeX friends from countries with modest economies, and $45 for regular (electronic) membership, both early bird until March 31, 2017.

By joining now, you can directly be part of and support the TUG TeX activities. You know,

  • Maintaining and developing the TeX Live distribution, that is also the base of MacTeX
  • Yearly international TeX conferences
  • The TUGboat journal
  • Supporting projects, such as LaTeX3, CTAN, LuaTeX and MetaPost and font creation

What do you think? Like to comment here, or on my blog post?

It’s all up to us:

Posted in TUG

Manually correct letter spacing: Kerning

From time to time it is necessary to manually correct the spacing between two letters, i.e. to add some extra kerning. The macro to add this kind of horizontal space is \kern followed by the amount of spacing Since it is a TeX primitive the “argument” must not be in braces and the trailing space is optional.


The following image shows the result: The upper line uses the natural kerning with too much space between letters W and o and the lower line shows the manually correction.

Example of extra kerning between the letters W and o

It is suitable to use a font-size-relative length unit like em.

Of course this would be lot of work to do but it is a good idea to at least do it for titles, headlines and such. Furthermore there are typefaces/fonts requiring more corrections than others …

Exporting from LyX to MS Word and LibreOffice

Julien Dutand has written a tutorial about how to export from LyX to MS Word Office XML format (.docx) and LibreOffice OpenDocument (.odt) with bibliography, almost out of the box. It requires a rather new version of LyX (2.1 and above) and the pandoc document converter. The article provides detailed installation instructions, and troubleshooting steps. Once it’s set up, it’s just clicking to Export in the main menu. Very handy!

Another part of the article deals with encoding and gives advice for exporting documents with bibliographies, and explains using bibliography styles with citation style language (CSL) format.

Here is the article: LyX Tutorial: export .docx or .odt with bibliography.

TeX on-line documentation

On PCs, tablets and smart-phones you can easily access TeX manuals and documentation via a web site:

What does it provide?

  • Keyword search with auto-completion as you type, listing all matches
  • OpenSearch for browsers with a search engine toolbar
  • Documentation sorted in categories by topic
  • Accessing TeX documentation even without having TeX installed
  • Reading TeX documentation on any PDF capable device with a web browser, such as a smart-phone.
  • Newest documentation even if your PC has an older TeX version
  • Reading a package manual before installing it
  • Easy-to-remember standardized link syntax<packagename>
  • Forums, such as and have buttons and BBCode tags for linking keywords (package names) to the corresponding documentation

Recently it got an update: read more.