[BlindMath] Your experience of learning LaTeX

prayner at unimelb.edu.au prayner at unimelb.edu.au
Sun Dec 6 00:28:31 UTC 2020

Godfrey, Jonathan via BlindMath writes:
>I'm still at a loss as to why we (blind people) persist in using a tool that is specifically designed to create an A4 page as against HTML. When it comes time to fit the content into the page layout construct (increasingly rare I add) this can be left to the very end of the process.
Journal articles is the short answer in my case. I also don't have
solutions I'm happy with for mathml under Linux so the practical
difference in accessibility between pdf and html is small for me.
>This brings me to my last point. I don't use LaTeX anymore. I'm not ruled by the page layout mentality because we deliver practically all content via online documents not dead trees. Use of HTML means my students are now in control of the printed pages' layout if they do ever decide to go that way. They are thoroughly in control of the on-screen experience with HTML.
I don't get to dictate that to my reviewers and editors. 
>I now recommend that people learn markdown instead of LaTeX. Even our graduate students are using markdown for their doctoral theses. They can build any LaTeX stuff into their work to get the layout things going nicely for the pdf, but in the meantime they're doing 99.9% of the work in a layout-free mindset. This is of course one of the main points mentioned to most LaTeX novices who were more accustomed to a WYSIWYG way of working.
This is a good point. My "meeting halfway" point with my graduate
students is overleaf. the hard point, for me, is collaborative
editing: tracking changes and
commenting on drafts, something overleaf+git makes possible though not

Peter Rayner
Academic Lead - Climate & Energy College <http://www.climatecollege.unimelb.edu.au>
Clean Air and Urban Landscapes NESP hub <http://www.nespurban.edu.au>
School of Earth Sciences, University of Melbourne, 3010, Vic, Australia
mobile +61 402 752 379, skype: petermorag 
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