METM16 presentation 


Workarounds for editing documents produced in LaTeX 

Ailish Maher, Barcelona, Spain; Susannah Goss, Berlin, Germany  

Authors of technical and scientific documents, especially those containing mathematical equations, are increasingly switching from MS Word to LaTeX. LaTeX is a free, open source software that separates form and content. It is essentially a markup language rather like HTML. A LaTeX version of (part of) this abstract, copied into Word, would look like this: 

documentclass{article}
title{Workarounds for editing documents produced in LaTeX}
author{S. Goss and A. Maher}
date{September 2016}
begin{document}
maketitle
Authors of technical and scientific documents, especially those containing mathematical equations, are increasingly switching from MS Word to textit{LaTeX}.
end{document}
 
Major advantages for researchers are (i) that a text prepared according to one journal’s guidelines can be transformed for re-submission elsewhere at the click of a button, simply by applying an external style file, and (ii) that it is easy to generate stable indexes, bibliographies, cross-references, etc. 
 
Major disadvantages for editors and translators are that LaTeX softwares often lack the comfortable — and oh so familiar! — comment/annotation and edit-tracking features offered by Word. You can, of course, edit LaTeX documents in Word, or even annotate the PDF if the English is really good and the text is reasonably short. However, for longer and more complex texts, other approaches are required.

In this presentation, we will give you an introduction to dealing with texts in LaTeX format and describe and illustrate some software workarounds. We will summarize the advantages and drawbacks of each approach, including cost and complexity, and explain how we have used them with clients and what this involves.


Ailish Maher is a freelance translator and editor who has the Chartered Institute of Linguists translation diploma and a master’s degree in translation from Dublin City University.
Susannah Goss is Scientific Editor at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin. She has the Chartered Institute of Linguists translation diploma and a European master’s degree in linguistics. 
 
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