[tex-live] Re: [pdftex] MS Word hell, TeX heaven?
Magnus Lie Hetland
magnus at hetland.org
Thu Mar 13 14:31:51 CET 2003
Herman Bruyninckx <Herman.Bruyninckx at mech.kuleuven.ac.be>:
> On Thu, 13 Mar 2003, Magnus Lie Hetland wrote:
> > > > I suppose these data don't support your hypothesis, but I've
> > > > actually written a 600 page book in Word -- though I must admit
> > > > each chapter was a separate file ;)
> > >
> A big advantage of (La)TeX over Word for large documents is that one can
> use a file versioning system (such as CVS) to really cooperate with many
> people, and work on the same files.
Oddly enough, version control was the main argument for using MS Word,
as it has version control built-in -- no reason to use CVS and the
Yes, it may be more limited, but seeing the changes made by different
people highlighted in different colours etc. was quite practical --
and Word *does* make it easier to cooperate with people who don't know
that much about computers (not a reference to the people I worked with
on my book, certainly).
But, yes, I do use CVS with LaTeX.
> In addition, this cooperation works
> on every platform, not just Windows.
> Other large-scale advantages are:
> - scriptable: it's easy to make automatic reports, with high
> typographical quality and rich features.
Word is also scriptable. I've even scripted it with Python... :)
> - scalable: (La)TeX documents can be stored in data bases as simple
> text, which adds all the scalability and configurability that
> databases bring.
> - searchable: it's easy to search over a big archive of (La)TeX
Not that I've done so, but I would think this should be possible in
Word as well, if you use the right MS tools.
> - perenniality: one can be sure to be able to access (La)TeX archives at
> any time in the distant future.
Yes -- good point. Opening old Word files can easily be quite
> Herman Bruyninckx
Magnus Lie Hetland "Nothing shocks me. I'm a scientist."
http://hetland.org -- Indiana Jones
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