Monatsarchiv: Juni 2012

Latex and SI-Units

Everybody knows the Problem: You are writing a formula, calculate something and then you end up with numbers – and some weird units. What to do? Until now, I always started something like
\frac{\mathrm{kg}*\mathrm{m}}{\mathrm{s}^2}. Thanks a lot! But today, I stumpled over the siunitx package. This makes it easier for you to attach units to numbers – both in text- and mathmode. The above SI-Unit would look like this:
Or, if you prefer it shorter:
You can even define your own units in the preamble:
Now I can write, that
The Monty Pythons' famous 16 Tons weight will smash you to the ground with a force of approx. \SI{156960.0}{\koeartsforce} - assumed you are standing on the surface of planet earth..

(Sorry Newton, I know this unit was actually dedicated to you!).

So, if you like doing things right go and check it out! You can find (german) introductory slides by at (they have other cool LaTeX stuff, check it out!), siunitx on and – last but not least, on your local system:
texdoc siunitx.

If you have a tip on how to enable auto-discovery of SI-Units – I would be thankful for that as well!


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How to write research papers

While browsing the web for help in writing advanced lab reports, I found this humourous guidelines:

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Screen Magie: Split Windows

If you are using Linux and have to open a ssh connection to some other machine, you might already have used an awesome tool: GNU Screen. This handy window manager makes troubles with lost ssh connections dissappear. Magic.
You will find a lot of tutorials on the internets on how to use it, for example this one.
If you are kind of used to it, you will find yourself having a lot of windows beeing open pretty quick. But this is, when trouble sometimes start: You are doing this code editing in one window, on the other window you want to compile and check the results. For example, running a python interpreter like bpython. Switching between windows is tiredsome, also open a second terminal, connecting via ssh again, do a screen -x, having your screen open twice – terrible.

Today I discovered a new method: It’s called split windows.
If you press* ^a S (split) you can split the window you are currently in (horizontally. Depending on your screen version the pipe character „|“ does open a vertical split). The new part of the window is still blank. Now switch in it, using ^a ^i (focus). Having selected it, you can fill it with a already open window of your choice by pressing f.e. ^a 1 to show window #1 or creating a new window ^a c and so on and so forth.

To close a split window, don’t do a ^a d (except you have created a new window and/or you really want to close the window), but do a ^a :remove which closes the split but leaves the window open. A ^a TAB lets you cycle through your split screen windows.

I found a couple of the shortcuts here (there are more, too).

Enjoy working split-screen :)

*: The ^-character stands for your CTRL-key. But keybindings may differ :)

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