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Guide to LaTeX (4th Edition) [Paperback]

Helmut Kopka , Patrick W. Daly
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 5, 2003 0321173856 978-0321173850 4

Published Nov 25, 2003 by Addison-Wesley Professional. Part of the Tools and Techniques for Computer Typesetting series. The series editor may be contacted at frank.mittelbach@latex-project.org. LaTeX is the text-preparation system of choice for scientists and academics, and is especially useful for typesetting technical materials. This popular book shows you how to begin using LaTeX to create high-quality documents. The book also serves as a handy reference for all LaTeX users. In this completely revised edition, the authors cover the LaTeX2ε standard and offer more details, examples, exercises, tips, and tricks. They go beyond the core installation to describe the key contributed packages that have become essential to LaTeX processing.

Inside, you will find:

  • Complete coverage of LaTeX fundamentals, including how to input text, symbols, and mathematics; how to produce lists and tables; how to include graphics and color; and how to organize and customize documents
  • Discussion of more advanced concepts such as bibliographical databases and BIBTeX, math extensions with AMS-LaTeX, drawing, slides, and letters
  • Helpful appendices on installation, error messages, creating packages, using LaTeX with HTML and XML, and fonts
  • An extensive alphabetized listing of commands and their uses

New to this edition:

  • More emphasis on LaTeX as a markup language that separates content and form--consistent with the essence of XML
  • Detailed discussions of contributed packages alongside relevant standard topics
  • In-depth information on PDF output, including extensive coverage of how to use the hyperref package to create links, bookmarks, and active buttons

As did the three best-selling editions that preceded it, Guide to LaTeX, Fourth Edition, will prove indispensable to anyone wishing to gain the benefits of LaTeX.

The accompanying CD-ROM is part of the TeX Live set distributed by TeX Users Groups, containing a full LaTeX installation for Windows, MacOSX, and Linux, as well as many extensions, including those discussed in the book.



0321173856B10162003

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Guide to LaTeX (4th Edition) + The LaTeX Companion (Tools and Techniques for Computer Typesetting) + LaTeX: A Document Preparation System (2nd Edition)
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

LaTeX is the text-preparation system of choice for scientists and academics, and is especially useful for typesetting technical materials. This popular book shows you how to begin using LaTeX to create high-quality documents. The book also serves as a handy reference for all LaTeX users. In this completely revised edition, the authors cover the LaTeX2ε standard and offer more details, examples, exercises, tips, and tricks. They go beyond the core installation to describe the key contributed packages that have become essential to LaTeX processing.

Inside, you will find:

  • Complete coverage of LaTeX fundamentals, including how to input text, symbols, and mathematics; how to produce lists and tables; how to include graphics and color; and how to organize and customize documents
  • Discussion of more advanced concepts such as bibliographical databases and BIBTeX, math extensions with AMS-LaTeX, drawing, slides, and letters
  • Helpful appendices on installation, error messages, creating packages, using LaTeX with HTML and XML, and fonts
  • An extensive alphabetized listing of commands and their uses

New to this edition:

  • More emphasis on LaTeX as a markup language that separates content and form--consistent with the essence of XML
  • Detailed discussions of contributed packages alongside relevant standard topics
  • In-depth information on PDF output, including extensive coverage of how to use the hyperref package to create links, bookmarks, and active buttons

As did the three best-selling editions that preceded it, Guide to LaTeX, Fourth Edition, will prove indispensable to anyone wishing to gain the benefits of LaTeX.

The accompanying CD-ROM is part of the TeX Live set distributed by TeX Users Groups, containing a full LaTeX installation for Windows, MacOSX, and Linux, as well as many extensions, including those discussed in the book.



0321173856B10162003

About the Author

Helmut Kopka was previously a scientific staff member at the Max-Planck-Institut für Aeronomie in Germany. He was involved in writing one of the first TeX drivers for HP LaserJet and subsequently introduced TeX and LaTeX into his institute, where it has become the standard text-processing system for scientific publications.

Patrick W. Daly is a scientific staff member at the Max-Planck-Institut für Aeronomie in Germany. He has written formatting styles for several scientific journals and is the author of the natbib package for flexible bibliographic citations and of the custom-bib system for customizing bibliographic styles for use with BibTeX.



0321173856AB10162003

Product Details

  • Paperback: 624 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 4 edition (December 5, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321173856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321173850
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #92,967 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you use LaTeX every day, this is the book to get September 2, 2004
Format:Paperback
There are easier introductions to LaTeX (including many on-line from various university courses) but when it comes to doing difficult things this is the book. I have both the German version (3 volumes) and the 3rd English version of this. Typical German thoroughness -- a very extensive index, lists of commands and symbols, clear and concise explanations. As another reviewer says, it's not for the beginner. You can indeed learn LaTeX from this book (first several chapters are simpler) but it is oriented to the person using LaTeX all the time. Especially nice are the detailed explanations of tables, page layout, math mode (both standard LaTeX and AMSLaTeX). There's no disguising that it takes time and effort to get into LaTeX, but the results are well worth it. When you have a difficult usage question, this book will help you find the answer in minimum time.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best guide for everyday use February 21, 2007
Format:Paperback
For anyone coming to LaTeX from a background in mathematics many sources of help are available, but it is more difficult for someone coming to it from a feeling of dissatisfaction with the results obtainable with typical WYSIWYG word processors. When you are surrounded by people who think that Word is wonderful and that its equation editor can handle any equations you need, getting to the point with LaTeX where you can use it to advantage may seem more trouble than it is worth. You will probably start with Leslie Lamport's LaTeX: A Document Preparation System, but although that is a good and authoritative start it is not really enough, as there is a great deal more to know than can be found in a short book, and in particular you need to know about all that is now available in the form of packages.

Fortunately there are some excellent sources of more detailed information, and two of these stand out: Kopka and Daly's "Guide to LaTeX" and Mittelbach and Goossens's LaTeX Companion. I acquired both of these about six months ago, but decided to defer posting reviews until I had discovered by experience which of them I actually used more, and the winner is clearly Kopka and Daly, mainly because it is much the easier to find one's way around. It is quite adequate as a complete guide to LaTeX (i.e. you don't really need to start with Lamport, though it's probably a good idea if you do), as the opening chapter on "basics" really is about basics, and the book progresses from there in a reasonably gentle way.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to find more reviews May 24, 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is a great book. I found it much easier to read than the other LaTeX books I looked at, most of which, in my opinion, are very poorly written. I came to rely on it very heavily as I wrote my thesis, and am very glad that I bought it. For more reviews on the book, do a search for "kopka daly latex" in the standard amazon search box. There are 23 reviews for the third edition, which should be relevant to this edition.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great reference for Latex September 8, 2004
Format:Paperback
I think that this book is a great reference for those that have already some familiarity with Latex. It covers pretty much any aspect that one needs to be effective in Latex. One of the best parts about this book is that there is an appendix which has the syntax of most commands in Latex. I do not own the third edition but I have done a side by side comparison of it with the fourth edition. In general the material all the same minus some formatting differences. I noticed that one chapter did not make it from the third edition to the fourth which was on class writing. Instead a chpater on modifying pre-existing classes was included.

If you already own the third edition, then this may not be as substantial revision to warrant the purchase of this edition, but I do like the new layout of this edition compared to the third.

BEWARE. I do not think that this is best book for those begining Latex. Instead, I recommend "Learning Latex" by D. F. Griffiths and D. J. Higham. This book has the Latex code written right next to how it would appear.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By demago
Format:Paperback
For starting out in Latex, I recommend one of the many free online tutorials, such as the "not-so-short introduction to Latex". That will get you more than started. This book is a great add-on reference to that, and the level is just right: not too wordy, but easy to follow. It has much deeper coverage of how to do graphics and drawings, how to create a bibliography, how to create postscript and pdf files, etc, in addition to the basics, of course.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Brief, effective introduction to Latex January 9, 2005
Format:Paperback
This is an ideal introduction to the TeX line of text formatting tools. It starts with a high level overview of the toolset. Then dives into document construction, then into tables, lists, mathematical formatting, and into user constructions and extensions for bibliographies, as well as other topics. PDF and Postscript formatting is covered. As well as AMS-TeX which is more extensions or mathematical formatting.

On the downside the substance of the text is only two-thirds of the book. Appendices make up the rest. Which necessarily means that the coverage is a little more terse than you would expect for a book this size.

That being said, this is still an excellent introduction to the TeX set of tools for anyone who is just starting out.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very very useful book June 22, 2005
Format:Paperback
I have been using this book a lot, in the recent months, and I am finding it very useful. I am not *at all* an expert latex user, but I do have decent programming skills, and I usually use a computer for hours every day, so my IT skills are decent, overall. For writing technical documents I have been using for years a fairly dated version of ScientificWorkplace, but I am now slowly switching to do more and more in latex, which gives me greater flexibility. What I usually do now is writing my documents in ScientificWorkplace, and then taking care of formatting and other unusual features editing the documents in Latex, through a program called WinEdt. In almost all cases, when I am in trouble with some commands or options, I find a clear solution in this book. For this reason, if your profile sounds a bit like mine, I would highly recommend this book. The new (fourth) edition also includes extensive references to the "hyperref" package, which is very very useful to create great pdf output that includes links to footnotes/sections/equations etc., bookmarks, and active buttons.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Kopka to Reference, Lamport to Learn, Internet to Query
Received it a month ago, and find I am falling back mostly to Lamport, whose examples are simply much more complete. Read more
Published 9 months ago by charles silva
4.0 out of 5 stars A very good reference
This book is an excellent reference to LaTeX. I would recommend this to anyone who want to seriously learn about the nuances of LaTeX
Published 10 months ago by Ali Sajid Imami
5.0 out of 5 stars great reference
it touches upon most general topics. very good examples. it is also clearly written. good for beginners. I highly recommend it.
Published 12 months ago by H. Dong
5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best Latex book for me
While there are many books on Latex around and many people seem to buy the book by Leslie Lamport - perhaps, I guess, because he wrote Latex - I find the Kopka books a lot easier... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Roland Goecke
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent basic handbook
An excellent introduction to LaTeX that covers all the essential aspects of learning and using LaTeX. Part of a four part set.
Published 18 months ago by Pasca
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent LaTex reference that is a must have
Everything you need to know to write up a mathematical paper, thesis or homework assignment in LaTex you will find in this handy reference manual. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Michael E. Grigsby
5.0 out of 5 stars good book for latex
This is a good book for learning Latex or even if you already know Latex is a good guide for any question about it, ths edition fix some bugs of previous editions, and is a very... Read more
Published on July 7, 2012 by Armando Ruiz Calderon
4.0 out of 5 stars Very basic and nice introductory book
I have known HTML for a very long time, but I had never used LaTeX, based on the reviews of the other reviewers, I came to the conclusion that this book is the best for me and I... Read more
Published on June 23, 2011 by Mohammad Akhlaghi
5.0 out of 5 stars Excelent book to start with Latex
Excelent book for beginners who want to acquire a full understanding of what's going on behind the scenes when you use Latex. Useful for advanced users too as a reminder.
Published on May 27, 2011 by XabierV
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Reference Manual
This book is excellent for somebody just getting into LaTeX and with some of the basics down. When I started using LaTeX, I received all of my education from various websites,... Read more
Published on April 4, 2011 by L. A. Loeb
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