Order of float placement parameters

Did you know that the order of the float placement specifiers h, t, b and p, like in

has absolutely no effect? Thus [hb] is exactly the same as [bh]: both allow the float only to be placed “here” or at the bottom but not the top of a page nor on a float page.

The order of possible positions is hard-coded in the algorithm: 1. here, 2. top of this page, 3. bottom of this page, 4. float page, 5. top of next page and finally 6. bottom of next page.

Get TeX Live 2016 now

The 2016 version of TeX Live (and MacTeX for Mac OS X users) is now available for download at tug.org/texlive (or tug.org/mactex in case of OS X). You can install TL 2016 beside older versions harmlessly and optionally delete the old version(s) afterwards to save some disk space.

Happy TeXing!

PS: Members of TUG and/or dante (and probably other TeX user groups) will receive a copy on DVD. So join the one of them 😉

TeXstudio 2.11.0 was released

There’s a new version of TeXstudio available at http://texstudio.sourceforge.net. Here are some of the many changes:

  • support two editors next to each other
  • new tabular wizard
  • improve table manipulation of tabu/longtabu
  • do not remove cursor mirrors on undo
  • several updates to col files

Point vs. Big Point

In TeX 1pt (point) is defined as 1/72.27 inch, which is the definition of the PostScript Point. Many other applications like Word and Adobe InDesign etc. however use a slightly bigger point – defined as 1/72 inch – the DTP Point. In TeX this unit is named Big Point: 1bp.

You may download a complete list of available units from my website: Length units in TeX (1.25 MB; direct download)

Event tip: TeX Users Group meeting 2016 Toronto

Early bird registration discount ends soon!

The TeX Users Group meeting 2016 will be in Toronto, July 25-27. There will be presentations about typesetting, fonts, tools, and more.

tuglogoUntil May 15 there’s a registration discount. That’s tomorrow! So there’s still the chance to register for less than the full price. In case you might miss it: I read in the fine print, that rates will increase after May 23, so there might be some further time to get that rate.

For students, no matter if member or not, there’s a significant discount: $100 instead of $350 (non student members). That’s an incredible offer, since the registration includes lunch on each day as well as morning and afternoon coffee breaks (breakfest usually included in the hotel fee).

Look at the program to see a list of presentation topics as of today. There you also can see how many people already registered from a lot of countries. You can find me there too, I plan to talk about TeX in industry.

Meet people from our TeX Users Group, that made TeX big, that provides the TeX Live software and ensures worldwide support!

Programming network switches and routers using TeX

I’m a network engineer, and a part of my job is configuring switches, routers and firewalls. I usually work with projects that have some thousands switches each: some core switches, server switches, many distribution switches, and a large amount of small access switches for users. I mainly make networks for cruise ships – just imagine a cruise ship with about 3000 passengers and 1000 crew: each cabin gets network access for IP-TV, IP telephone, air condition, programmable door lock, computer port. Not to forget let’s say 1000 WiFi access points, 300 CCTV cameras, cash machines, vending machines, office computers everywhere, even in the Spa, IP clocks, engine and nautical workstations, broadcast center and of cause redundant data centers with racks full of servers. For security reasons, there are hundreds of VLANs (virtual networks) in several (virtual) security domains.

How to configure and to manage all of this?

Let’s take a look at configurations:

Continue reading

Use rotating.sty for wide tables/figures

You can use the rotating package to automatically rotate wide figures or tables. It provides {sidewaystable}/{sidewaysfigure} as a alternatives for {table}/{figure} and rotates the environment content by 90°. The direction of the rotation can be set with package options clockwise or counterclockwise; if you set twoside as class or package option the tables/figures are rotated by extra 180° on odd pages.

PS: Use booktabs for a nicer styling of your tables 😉

Add a prefix to your labels

To keep track of (the target of) your labels you might want to add a prefix to their names indicating the thing they are referring to. E.g. sec for sections, eq for equations, fig for figures etc. It is common to separate the prefix with a colon from the label name like in the following example:

Then when you read your code you always know that \ref{sec:test} refers to a section.

In some cases the colon can cause troubles, e.g. when you type a french document with babel, varioref, hyperref and cleveref (see this and this post on TeX.SX for example). In that case you may use another character to separate the prefix.