[texhax] Request for advice on figures for on-line and printable book.

Andy Farnell padawan12 at obiwannabe.co.uk
Wed Mar 9 08:33:54 CET 2011

Hello Thomas,

Since you need to keep your eye on two targets
simultaneously, my experience is it's best to 
prototype and refine the tool chain before moving 
on. Time spent devising a great system will save 
hundreds of hours once you start writing and 

So you want LaTeX for static text but will need 
to feed data (images) into that system and take 
output (text formatting) too, maybe beginning with 
a customisable front end like Lyx or a set of emacs
scripts will be useful to make a "central command" 
system for other scripts that will run. 

Your choice of dynamic content is indeed vast.
The tool choice will depend on whether your focus
is mainly 2D or 3D. I would be tempted to look to 
the future and aim for HTML5 with vector graphics 
and the ability to run the formula/simulations locally
on browser. That would give you highly portable

OTOH, systems like GNU Octave, Processing and
WebGL will give you nicer 3D.

If you can get something looking great in any
3D modeller you can almost certainly export and
render using a dedicated renderer like POVRAY 
and then obtain high quality images in postscript.
But those won't be precisely the same images running
on the real-time browser version. Some compromise
between high quality and real-time may be needed.

Andy Farnell <padawan12 at obiwannabe.co.uk>

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