Writing scientific papers in Mac

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Peter Pan, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. Peter Pan macrumors newbie

    Jan 8, 2009
    -So far, I have always worked with PC/MS Office,
    -I exchange many documents with colleagues who use PC/MS Office, I use reviewing options in Word
    -I am currently switching to MAC :apple:, because I need a stable work platform

    What is the best text editor to write scientific papers in MAC?
    -Pages09 now collaborate with MathType, great for typing equations to scientific publications, I like that very much, but can I still exchange documents with colleagues and use reviewing features?
    -More importantly, are the equations created in Pages, formatting etc. transformed correctly to .doc? What is the alternative version to submission using Pages? PDF works for initial review, but format such .doc is needed for final submission.
    -Word for Mac (actually MS Office 07 on both platforms) has got issues with MathType, I used the built-in equation editor in Windows Office 07 version, but .docx is not generally accepted by leading journals, they still prefer submissions in .doc, and I am not sure if there is a built-in equation editor in Office for Mac.
    -I was tempted to try Latex, but non of my colleagues uses that, all of them use MS Word, which is hard if we want to exchange documents/review

    -What about functionality of EndNone & Bookends in Pages vs. Word for Mac? What combination works the best?

    I want to get the trouble-least solution.

    Thanks for any suggestions.
  2. gibbz macrumors 68030

    May 31, 2007
    I was going to say that LaTeX is the best (which it is), but I read your reasoning for not using it. I prefer it because everything (equations, references, numbering, etc..) is handled in one nice package.

    An option that might work for you would be to use LaTeXIT for Mac, which is an App that let's you easily type in equations in latex format and it produces nice little images that you can insert in say Word. Office for Mac does have an equation editor. It is cumbersome, but gets the job done.

    I haven't used it, but my friend really likes EndNote in conjunction with MS Word.

    Personally, if you aren't going to write the document in LaTeX, I would say use Word with equation editor or LaTeXIT with EndNote.
  3. plinden macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2004
    My wife uses Word + Endnote on her Mac and hasn't had any issues sharing with her Windows-using colleagues. We haven't tried the new Pages 09 with Endnote yet. I'm sure not many people outside of Apple or Thomson have.

    When you get your Mac, if it's new you'll a 30 day trial of iWork (if it's still iWork 08, you can get the 09 trial from http://www.apple.com/iwork/download-trial/ ), and there should also be a "test drive" of MS Office for Mac.

    You can also get a 30 day trial of Endnote X2 from http://www.endnote.com/endemo.asp and MathType from http://www.dessci.com/EN/PRODUCTS/mathtype/trial.asp

    If I were you, I'd try out both Office and iWork before buying. It'll probably come down to personal preference in the end. You'll likely prefer Office to start with, since you'll be more used to the interface, but the more I use iWork, the more I prefer it.

    As for converting - any compatibility issues I've had between iWork files and Office files have been with presentations - but since you'd be exporting to a non-native format from Pages, there's always a chance it won't work right. And the more complex the document, the more likely you are to have issues.
  4. xraydoc macrumors demi-god


    Oct 9, 2005
    Exactly. If you're collaborating on complex documents with multiple people, then your options are to either use something like PDF and have people make sticky-note-like annotations with either Preview or Adobe Acrobat, force everyone to use an open format like OpenDoc (.odf) and appropriate software (NeoOffice, OpenOffice, StarOffice, etc.) or give in and use the same software they're using (i.e., Microsoft Office).
  5. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    First a quibble--you don't write papers in Mac, you write them on the Mac.

    Forget about Pages. Some journals and funding agencies still accept WordPerfect documents, but virtually all papers are now submitted in either Microsoft Word or LaTeX format. A fantastic LaTeX implementation, teTeX, with your choice of graphical front-end editors are available on the Mac. TeXShop is the most popular teTeX-based editor. Everything that you need is included in the free MacTeX bundle.

    If you need LaTeX, then you will know it. Certain journals in mathematics and particle physics require it. Virtually every other other specifies Word. Your colleagues use Word. This means that you need Word. The latest version of Microsoft Office for the Macintosh is Office 2008. Except for Visual BASIC for Applications macros, Word 2008 is compatible with its Windows sibling, Word 2007. The lack of VBA is not an issue because it is not used in papers submitted for publication. Word 2008 can read and write .docx files. It can also read and write .doc files.
  6. cookiebunny macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2008
    Word 2008 does not support Word 2007's equations. They'll appear as pictures.

    You might have better luck using MathType to handle equations in Word 2008.
    [EDIT: Not MathType, but the Equation Editor But it won't work with Word 2007 equations.]
  7. munkery macrumors 68020


    Dec 18, 2006
    I use NeoOffice (free office suite) and Bibdesk (free reference manager). For Bibdesk to work with NeoOffice (or any other word processor other than LaTex for which it works out of the box) you need to make bibdesk templates. The templates are very easy to make (basically, scripted using a subset of HTML). You can find some already made templates on the net but most of these need to be tweaked to be correct.

    Formulae support in NeoOffice can be summarized as follows:

    "The Math component integrated in NeoOffice allows you to write formulæ and mathematical symbols both in a Writer, Calc and Impress document, directly or as stand-alone Math documents. These formulæ are inserted as objects.
    The method used by NeoOffice Math for writing formulæ, although not as intuitive as the methods used by MathType, the AppleWorks equation editor, or Microsoft Office, is very effective. It uses a language you will learn quickly, and provides a set of templates which will make your task easier."

    The PDF app called "Skim" (by the same developers as BibDesk) allows you to add notes to PDF's. Whether the notes can be read in other PDF Veiwers, I do not know.

    Also, the NeoOffice spreadsheet app supports VBA Macros and NeoOffice can open and save in the latest MS Office formats.
  8. mac.v21 macrumors newbie

    Feb 17, 2008
    try MathMagic

    MathMagic combines the easy MathType like UI, TeX typing, LaTeX or MathML pasting or drag & drop, and TeX equation quality, automatic baseline alignment when inserted in Pages document, and much more, all into one.

    Trials and intro video available here.
  9. themfinger macrumors newbie

    Oct 5, 2009
    Recently I made my thesis in mac, and I had a lot of problems with final formating. Tables and Pictures are a pain in the a** in Word.

    I'd like to know where to make a "New England Journal of Medicine" styled document without a bugged software. What do you guys think?

    Before doing ANYTHING else, you have to try Papers

    Its absolutely FANTASTIC.

    You can export the papers you want to Word Citation Manager (altough it's buggy, the word), and use the auto bibliography feature. BibWord let's you use different citation styles:

    If you discover a way of designing a nice paper layout please share, microsoft word is a pain in the a** as I said.

  10. dbwie macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2007
    Albuquerque, NM, USA
    The poster MisterMe has it right. Most journals require Word or LaTex. Your colleagues use Word, then use Word. Pages can export as Word or PDF files, but if you have complex formatting, there may not be perfect translation. EndNote X2 works great with Word 2008 on Snow Leopard. I have read that the newer EndNote X3 has some compatibility issues/bugs with Snow Leopard, which are being addressed.

    By the way, I'm writing my dissertation using Word and Endnote, with no problems. I had written my dissertation proposal using LaTex and BibDesk, but my dissertation committee wasn't well versed in LaTeX so I switched. (They specifically wanted to use the comments and change tracking in Word to collaborate with me.)
  11. exegete77 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 12, 2008
    Howdy. I used Papyrus for a book, writing, editing, layout, etc. And providing final proof texts [PDFs] for publishing. Worked well. There are versions for Mac and Windows. It runs in memory, so very fast, very stable.
  12. ahoesch macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2013
    You might want to try Cassiopeia (http://www.advanced-science.com)! Cassiopeia is a WYSIWYG scientific wordprocessor and symbolic algebra system for MacOSX. It automatically generates LaTeX when it comes to printing (no need to code LaTeX manually).



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