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Quick Introduction to LaTeX

A quick guide to install and start using LaTeX


Below is the LaTeX code and the PDF output for a simple sample document.  First you will see a readable version of the code followed by the LaTeX PDF output.  At the bottom of the page, you will find a easy to copy version of the code if you would like to play around with it and compile it on your computer. 

Copyable text

% This is a simple sample document.  For more complicated documents take a look in the excersice tab. Note that everything that comes after a % symbol is treated as comment and ignored when the code is compiled.

\documentclass{article} % \documentclass{} is the first command in any LaTeX code.  It is used to define what kind of document you are creating such as an article or a book, and begins the document preamble

\usepackage{amsmath} % \usepackage is a command that allows you to add functionality to your LaTeX code

\title{Simple Sample} % Sets article title
\author{My Name} % Sets authors name
\date{\today} % Sets date for date compiled

% The preamble ends with the command \begin{document}
\begin{document} % All begin commands must be paired with an end command somewhere
    \maketitle % creates title using infromation in preamble (title, author, date)
    \section{Hello World!} % creates a section
    \textbf{Hello World!} Today I am learning \LaTeX. %notice how the command will end at the first non-alphabet charecter such as the . after \LaTeX
     \LaTeX{} is a great program for writing math. I can write in line math such as $a^2+b^2=c^2$ %$ tells LaTexX to compile as math
     . I can also give equations their own space: 
    \begin{equation} % Creates an equation environment and is compiled as math
    If I do not leave any blank lines \LaTeX{} will continue  this text without making it into a new paragraph.  Notice how there was no indentation in the text after equation (1).  
    Also notice how even though I hit enter after that sentence and here $\downarrow$
     \LaTeX{} formats the sentence without any break.  Also   look  how      it   doesn't     matter          how    many  spaces     I put     between       my    words.
    For a new paragraph I can leave a blank space in my code. 

\end{document} % This is the end of the document

Compiled code

Easy to read code