LaTeX, MS Word, asking questions, LyX (was Re: [OS X TeX] 1/2" margins)

Simon Spiegel simon at
Thu Oct 12 20:01:25 CEST 2006

On 12.10.2006, at 19:41, Alain Schremmer wrote:

> William Adams wrote:
>> On Oct 12, 2006, at 12:54 PM, Alain Schremmer wrote:
>>> I also hasten to add that I got here immense help for questions   
>>> that even I, but with hindsight, see as fairly trivial. But I   
>>> recall wondering why there couldn't be something, call it LaTeX   
>>> Light, that could be learned as fast as, say, MS word and /that/   
>>> got me almost flamed.
>> The thing is, LaTeX and MS Word are fundamentally different, the  
>> one  is a markup / typesetting system, the other a word processor.
> I said "could be learned as fast" and implied nothing more. But you  
> are right, by using Word, I asked for it.

It's a big misconception that Word is easy learn. Ok, it's easy to  
write something which can be printed and read afterwards, but so far,  
I've met very few people who actually know how to use Word beyond ad  
hoc formatting. Word's styles system is very difficult to use  
(because it's UI is essentially broken) and I'd say that the big  
majority of Word users actually has no clue about the app they use  
(meaning: they use a fraction of its functionality and could easily  
do with something like TextEdit).


Simon Spiegel
Steinhaldenstr. 50
8002 Zürich

Telephon: ++41 44 451 5334
Mobophon: ++41 76 459 60 39

"I'm not that easy to impress. – O, a blue car." Homer Simpson

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