\title{Book review --- `How to run a paper mill'}
\author[Allan Reese]{Allan Reese\\University of Hull}
\begin{article}
\noindent
{\em `How to run a paper mill', \bf John Woodwark}, Information
Geometers, Winchester (1992), ISBN 1-874728-00-3, xv + 111
pages.\footnote{This review is reproduced from the TUG'93 {\em TUGly
Telegraph}}
\bigskip
\noindent Not a manual on processing lumber into landfill. The sub-title is
explanatory: {\it Writing technical papers and getting them
published}. This slim volume will interest all members as it
describes scientific progress in the modern context. Papers are
currency; they are the tickets to attend \TeX\ conferences;
they earn kudos, preferment and promotion. The approach is realistic
and entertainingly cynical --- thought-provoking whether you have
``played the system'' and published many papers, or are about to
embark on your first.
Woodwark considers the reasons and methods for research, writing and
publishing --- and all the permutations for ordering those three
phrases! He gives pithy practical advice to the aspiring author; this
covers the text, and the use of graphics, algebraic notations and
modern conventions like pseudo-code.
Woodwark himself used \TeX\ for his work, and gives credits on pages
xiv, 77 and 99.
An unreserved recommendation to read.
\end{article}
\author[Malcolm Clark]{Malcolm Clark\\University of Warwick}
\title{Book review -- `Handbook on Writing for the Mathematical Sciences'}
\begin{article}
\bigskip
\noindent SIAM, the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics
recently published the {\it `Handbook on Writing for the Mathematical
Sciences'}\/ by {\bf\em Nicholas J Higham}.\footnote{This review is
reproduced from the TUG'93 {\em TUGly Telegraph}} The first thing
which the reader notices is the delightful use of the very fine
Computer Modern typeface. There can be no doubt that for mathematical
compuscripts, Computer Modern has no rival. In fact, as the author
notes, the book was typeset using \LaTeX\ with the {\it book} document
style and the {\it jeep} option. I think it looks pretty good.
It contains a lot of good advice for those who
want to typeset maths. It firmly acknowledges
a debt to a large number of other writers on
mathematical writing, and more generally on
a wide variety of others who have contributed
to editing, writing, language usage and all the
other things we tend to take for granted. Having said
that, it is clear that Don Knuth is among those acknowledged.
Much of the book is directed at those mathematicians
who would write for SIAM, and emphasizes their
own publications, stressing their particular style
(available from your friendly Aston Archive),
but much else is applicable widely. In fact, I would
tend to see the whole book as `A handbook of writing'
which just uses mathematics, and sciences, for
illustration. There is so much good sense here
that it would be a real pity if non-mathematicians
ignored it because they thought it in some
way irrelevant. So many of his examples
are not only thoughtful, but also clear
and apposite.
There is also much useful trivia. I was unaware
that Euler had `invented' the notation for $e$,
although I did have a clue that Kronecker had
introduced Kronecker's delta, $\delta_{ij}$!
There are lots of other little gems hidden away
in the text.
But perhaps the main reason for recommending this
book is the stress which Higham lays on the use of
\TeX\ and its tools. Chapter 10 `Computer aids for
writing and research' is the second longest chapter in the
book (after `Writing a paper'), and discusses
the use of \TeX\ and its variants, as well as spelling
checkers, citation services, and the Internet.
It is an extremely useful resource just for this
chapter. Obviously it cannot be an in-depth
treatment, but it says enough to whet the appetite
and send the curious in the right direction. Excellent!
A warning however: Higham's world is the world
of Unix and PostScript. In my view, the correct world
to be in if you don't happen to have a Mac.
He does point to the use of Ghostscript for
printing and previewing { PostScript} files on non-PostScript
output devices (available for Unix, MS DOS and Macintosh).
With that one small proviso --- recommended.
\end{article}