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It's funny.  Laugh. Math Software

Stop the Math Press's Presses — Knuth Announces iTex 284

After Donald Knuth's anticipated "earthshaking announcement," it's safe to say that the world is still here. yowlanku writes "Christoper Adams tweeted live from TUG 2010 Conference that 'Donald Knuth's TeX successor will be named iTeX.' " Knuth "also stated that this successor of TeX will have features like 3-D printing, animation, stereographic sound."
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Stop the Math Press's Presses — Knuth Announces iTex

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  • 3D Printing (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CarpetShark ( 865376 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @06:51PM (#32765674)

    Come to think of it, I'm only familiar with the hardware side of 3D printing.

    What is the state of the art in terms of 3D printing software and/or definition languages? Is there anything approaching a standard yet, that can take account of issues like number and type of available materials (conductive metal, plastic, etc.), material properties (tensile strength etc.), degrees of freedom (angles that can be accessed), resolution/step size, and other issues like that in a reasonable way?

    I doubt it really, but I guess my question is more "how far are we from achieving it? What work's been done so far?"

  • Re:Not on the iPhone (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 01, 2010 @07:02PM (#32765834)

    Not true, historically the ratio was about:
    90% Microsoft bashing
    10% Intellectual property bashing

    Then it turned into:
    50% Microsoft bashing
    50% Intellectual property bashing

    Only recently did Apple fight their way into the mix, but they've gained market share quickly, eating primarily into Microsoft bashing. What's interesting, is it parallels the browser wars a bit, though the swings are more dramatic here. But:
    Microsoft=IE (obviously)
    Intellectual Property=Firefox (open source, makes sense)
    Apple=Chrome (works in the both big brothery sense)

    I'm not sure what Opera is, maybe SCO?

  • by jthill ( 303417 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @07:58PM (#32766580)

    I wonder if this would surprise him: at 4AM Pacific today, I searched for "knuth announcement".

    Google told me that was the 27th most common search over the preceding hour.

  • by R.Mo_Robert ( 737913 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @07:59PM (#32766594)

    Actually, it's only the diphthongs that raise in Canadian, and only (for most speakers who have it) before voiceless consonants. That's what Canadaian "out" sounds like General American "oat," but a word like "plug" is unaffected for two reasons: the final voiced consonant and the monophthong. ("Boot," too, since it's also only monophthong /u/.)

  • by billstewart ( 78916 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @08:35PM (#32767068) Journal

    Techshop [] is a shared-equipment workspace in Menlo Park CA, with a few other branches (they're opening in San Francisco this summer.) I was there welding a couple of weeks ago, and ran into a friend of mine who was doing a project in the laser cutter room, and the people working on the other laser cutter were Knuth and his wife. (I refrained from walking over and saying "Hi, I'm Joe Fanboi, I used your books 30 years ago!".) Techshop has laser cutters, embroidering machines, 3D printers, and plasma cutters, and here's Knuth's latest project supporting them. I wonder if he's got any plans for controlling CNC milling machines and routers?

  • by Bluesman ( 104513 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @09:17PM (#32767482) Homepage

    I did my thesis in LaTeX; in fact I learned LaTeX to do the thesis so I wouldn't have to use MS Word. I probably didn't save any time since I was starting from scratch with LaTeX and had to update the school's age-old LaTeX template to work with the newer versions, but man, when I saw everyone else struggling with Word and whatever awful math plugin they had to use, I was glad I took the extra time.

    Now I use LaTeX whenever I can since the output is so beautiful and I can type lists and tables a lot faster than I can mouse them in in Word.

    I highly recommend it.

  • by Bluesman ( 104513 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @11:06PM (#32768354) Homepage

    Lyx is cool, but I like LaTeX by hand because it's just faster. Anything repetitive I write my own definitions (i.e. macros) for, so it's a huge time saver.

    I really dislike WYSIWYG. I want to type, never use a mouse, and have the program format it for me.

  • by soundhack ( 179543 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @11:12PM (#32768390)

    I went the opposite. I did my thesis in Word, even though LaTeX was the standard to use at my lab. I knew how to use LaTex (I did my MS thesis in it) but to me LaTeX was too clumsy.

    I hated the way it laid out figures/tables. A slight change of the text (add a line or two, change a parameter) would result in widely different figure/table placement, sometimes even clumping them all at the end.

    The default font the generated postscript files had was 1) ugly 2) always the same. Of course, the latter is a "good thing", but you can easily tell someone's thesis was done in Tex/LaTeX, while in Word you can choose slightly different fonts from the same family that made it look at least a little different from every other thesis.

    Viewing figures/graphs is a pain, if you add a new figure you have to "compile" the latex, call up the ps viewer, then scroll to the figure to see if it looks right, not to mention figure out where LaTeX decided to place them.

    All in all, Word has its faults but WYSIWYG was a godsend and I never regretted using it for my thesis.

    As for tables, I make them in Excel then link them into Word. That is (to me) a heck of a lot easier than typing extra syntactic markup to get tables.

  • by drosboro ( 1046516 ) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @11:35PM (#32768542)

    I did my thesis in LaTeX - and I don't believe there was a single mathematical equation in it. I chose to use it so that I could focus on the structure of the document, rather than formatting. There's lots of good things about it beyond just math!

    Of course, I may have been the only person in the Faculty of Education at my university ever to use LaTeX for their thesis - at least outside of the math education folks. I had to use a LaTeX style from our computer science department - only CS, physics, and math seem to have LaTeX thesis styles at my school.

  • by John Hasler ( 414242 ) on Friday July 02, 2010 @12:42PM (#32775304) Homepage

    > I don't even use the damn thing...

    If you did you would not have been so fast to "spot the hoax" (self-parody, actually).

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