[OS X TeX] Adding text, etc. to figures... why don't we just do it like this...

David Watson dewatson at me.com
Sat Feb 21 16:15:48 CET 2009

On Feb 21, 2009, at 7:57 AM, Joseph C. Slater PE, PhD wrote:

> I used to be a big fan of psfrag before pdtex. pdftricks, etc.,  
> isn't quite as convenient (I might have the names wrong). I had to  
> get something done quickly the other day and put $k_1$ on a figure,  
> and simply did the following.
> \includegraphics[]{fig.jpg}\hspace*{-2.4in}\raisebox{1.2in}{$k_1$}
> Am I missing something, or why are some of the other tools  
> necessary? Is this just not robust enough? Granted, it took a few  
> compiles to get the positioning right.

I have never used psfrag before, and so I cannot comment on its pros  
and cons.

Having said that, from reading the introductory material in the psfrag  
documentation (i.e. "What is PSfrag") I can see the benefits of such  
tools for certain circumstances.
Say, for instance, that I had a plotting program such as gnuplot, or  
alternatively, a program such as Illustrator which is more than  
capable of making well-formed postscript output.
If I want the text in such a plot/illustration to match with my  
document text, and say I need to put something complicated into that  
illustration (like matrices), I could insert a placeholder for that  
material, which might more appropriately be handled within the scope  
of LaTeX.

It boils down to a choice of
a) make LaTeX output and insert it into the illustration, à la  
LaTeXiT, or to
b) make the illustration first, and add the LaTeX inside your .tex  

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