Writing a math paper in Microsoft word?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by vouder17, Nov 1, 2006.

  1. vouder17 macrumors 6502a

    vouder17

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    #1
    Hey,
    i did a quick search, but it resulted in nothing, so maybe you guys can help me out a lil bit.
    I have to do a math investigation thing, and I would much rather type it out in word or something, than have to hand write it all. But the big problem is that it is a pain to insert all the mathematical symbols into a document. I was wondering if there was a handy app (or toolbar plugin thing) out there that made this easier.
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
    Thanks in advance
    Moi
     
  2. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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  3. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

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    #3
    I believe that Equation Editor is not in the default Office installation, so if you don't have it, pop your install disc back in and look for it under Office Tools.
     
  4. Epicurus macrumors 6502

    Epicurus

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    #4
    I've come to avoid MS Word if I can help it, and my current opinion is a direct result of my asking a similar question to yours. I find that LaTeX, despite a somewhat rough learning curve, is far, far easier than Word when it comes to typesetting math. In fact, whereas Word was painful to work with, LaTeX is actually quite fun! Hard to believe, I know.

    Try TeXShop or iTeXMac. You can even use TextMate, if that's your thing.

    Take a day or two to work through a LaTeX example paper and I promise you you'll never look back.:D
     
  5. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

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    #5
    My father (a college math professor) still uses OS 9 so that he can continue to use MathWriter...he hasn't found anything on OS X that satisfies his needs as well as that ancient program does.
     
  6. vouder17 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    vouder17

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    #6
    Well thanks for all your replies. Gonna try all your suggestions tomorrow, need a bit of sleep now.
    So goodnight (well for me at-least) and thanks again
     
  7. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #7
    A quick search of this forum reveals numerous threads about math equation editors. At any rate, there is no equation editor on any platform that is designed for the disinterested user. MathType's Equation Editor is bundled with Office. For visual editors, I prefer MathEQ. You may also try LaTeX-based freeware equation editor LaTeXiT. If you are willing to abandon Word, then the world of LaTeX opens up to you. Amoung the LaTeX-based editors is Qt-based texmaker which features toolbar-based math-expression templates.
     
  8. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #8
    Definitly try LaTeX, I wouldn't use Word, it is the worst for equations, very fiddly.

    Depending on your confidence the easiest is to try NeoOffice (open office) which as long as you are doing reasonably basic (I'm a second year undergrad mathematician and it would probably be enough) mathematics (though it is rubbish for logic) you could use that, it has a LaTeX-like syntax too, though you can also just press buttons. You will need to get the latest patch (which is available here to get Greek letters to display correctly.)

    For the following options follow the instructions given in [guide]Installing LaTeX on a Mac[/guide]

    If you have Pages (though you can use Word as well though you have to drag and resize the images in Word.) then you can use LaTeX just to write the equations which is easier (though IMO produces less professional results, it is perfect for lecture notes etc.) you use LaTeXiT to do this, if you use Pages you can use [guide]Services[/guide] to write the equations in Pages itself and simply let LaTeXiT convert them to equations.

    The most profession is using LaTeX properly with TeXShop or another program as suggested by Epicurus, it has a steep learning curve though the documents at the end of the day look excellent.

    As suggested by MisterMe texmaker looks really good! I'd probably give that a go.
     
  9. acidity macrumors regular

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    #9
    No document app will help you. Latex is the way to go!!! Once you use Latex, you will use it for normal document writing also....its like slow poison!
     
  10. vouder17 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    vouder17

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    #10
    You have a point, I do lack interest in searching forums, thats why i did a brief search. But I do not see how my lack of interest in searching forums reflects my lack of interest in an equation editor.

    Well thanks everyone, I installed the equation editor in word, and I am slowly getting to learn it.

    Thanks again for all your help.
     
  11. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #11
    BOO! ;) btw Why did you decide against LaTeX?
     
  12. dpaanlka macrumors 601

    dpaanlka

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    #12
    I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned Grapher, the free equation and graphing program included on every Macintosh that would allow you to write out equations easily, then copy and paste them into Microsoft Word or Apple Pages or whatever you happen to be using. This is also similar to the Graphing Calculator program found in Mac OS 9 and below.

    Here is an equation I did just now, to show you how easy it is:

    sample.jpg

    You can find Grapher in your Applications -> Utilities folder.
     
  13. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #13
    Grapher is a great utility. However, its equation editor is designed primarily for entering Grapher functions to be graphed and not for publication. Even if a science or engineering student or professional uses Grapher for some of his/her work, he/she will have to use another editor for the rest of it.
     
  14. dpaanlka macrumors 601

    dpaanlka

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    #14
    Exactly the point... so this person can continue using Word which he is comfortable with, and use Grapher (which is already on his system) to create equations he can place into his Word documents.
     
  15. ChickenSwartz macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    I would suggest downloading MathType. You can get a free 90 day trial. This program expands on EquationEditor allowing you to insert references and labels for your equations and opening more symbol options. This 90 days should let you finish you math project and learn LaTeX. I am fairly sure LaTeX is the standard for preparing math documents. LaTeX is the standard because of its pure cross platform compatibility. I know at my school all the Math professors use it, some work in Windows , some in OSX, and some in other Linux/Unix enviroments. Our school's main server has a TeX compiler on it so as long as the computer you have has a text editor, a SSH program, and a PS or PDF viewer you can create a great looking document.

    But, learning LaTeX is a time investment. If this is the only math document you plan on making for a while MathType would be best.
     
  16. pjo macrumors regular

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    Feb 20, 2006
    #16
    lyx anyone?

    okay, it probably works better on *nix platforms but for a WYSIWYM(what you see is what you mean) editor, I find it works pretty well.

    Essentially, it's a frontend to Latex (and allows you to input latex snips wherever you want) and works on having a Latex based template and just using styles to handle your paper.

    Takes a while to get used to (hint go through the tutorial if you decide to try it), but ended up working for me.

    You can get instructions for installing it on the lyx wiki
     
  17. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #17
    Not true. Your professors use LaTeX because their professional journals require it. Professional journals require that manuscripts be submitted as LaTeX files because it guarantees that their typesetters can flow the documents into their layouts without worrying about the placement of equations and graphics. LaTeX takes care of those details automatically. Because your professors do their scholarly work in LaTeX, they do their other work in LaTeX as well.
     
  18. Am3822 macrumors 6502

    Am3822

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    #18
    MisterMe

    It's true, most scientific publishers insist a LaTeX document (some do accept microsoft word, though), but they can get away with it because LaTeX is, in a way, cross-platform. Since a LaTeX document is only a text file, it can be 'compiled' on any platform which has LaTeX installed.

    For a short math paper, though, I would recommend LyX to those without LaTeX exprience.
     
  19. mduser63 macrumors 68040

    mduser63

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    #19
    Can anybody recommend a good LaTeX tutorial? I often hear people say how great it is, but everytime I've tried to use it I've quickly become confused and been unable to really figure it out. I'd like to learn how to use it.
     
  20. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

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    #20
    I don't want to get into an argument over semantics, but virtually every professional has access to Word. For all practical purposes, it is as cross-platform as LaTeX. What's more, it does not have to be compiled. However, Word documents have notoriously fickle formatting. It actually encourages bad typographical practice. With LaTeX, it is very difficult to produce a badly typeset publication. The assurance of high-quality typeset output is what makes TeX compelling. This is why it has been ported to all platforms.

    As for LyX, I am of two minds. It works--that's the good thing. The bad thing is that it wants to be a WYSIWYG editor with a teTeX backend. As such, users are tempted to use it like Word. That is not how TeX is supposed to be used.
     
  21. Am3822 macrumors 6502

    Am3822

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    #21
  22. cube macrumors G4

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    May 10, 2004
    #22
    The usual reference for learning LaTeX is a book called "The LaTeX Companion".
    There is also a book set which includes this and others called "The LaTeX Companions".
     

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