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Tag: LaTeX


COL is a map-coloring game invented by Colin Vout.
Two players Left (bLack) and Right (white) take turns in coloring the
map subject to the rule that no two neighboring regions may be colored
the same. The last player to be able to move wins the game. For my talk
on combinatorial game theory in two weeks, I choose for a simplified
version of COL, namely COLgo which is played with go-stoned on a
(partial) go-board. Each spot has 4 neighbors (North, East, South and
West). For example, the picture on the left is a legal COLgo-position on
a 5×5 board. COL is a simple game to illustrate some of the key features
of game theory. In sharp contrast to other games, one has a general
result on the possible values of a COL-position : each position has
value $z$ or $z+\\bigstar$ where $z$ is a (Conway)-number (that is, a
dyadic integer) and where $\\bigstar$ is the fuzzy game {0|0}. In
the talk I will give a proof of this result (there are not so many
results in combinatorial game theory one can prove from scratch in 50
minutes but this is one of them). Of course, to illustrate the result I
had to find positions which have counter-intuitive values such as 1/2.
The picture on the left is an example of such a position on a 5×5 board
but surely one must be able to find 1/2-positions on a 4×4 board
(perhaps even on a 3×3?). If you have an example, please tell me.

On a slightly different matter : I used the psgo.sty package in LaTeX to print the (partial)
go-boards and positions. If I ever write out the notes I’ll post them
here but they will be in Dutch.

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an even better LaTeX system

previous post the best LaTeX system was a commercial for Gerben
Wierda’s i-Installer to get a working tetex
distribution. I’ve been working happily with this TeX-system for two
years now but recently run into a few (minor) problems. In the process
of solving these problems I created myself a second tetex-system
more or less by accident. This is what happened. On the computer at the
university I once got fun packages running such as a chess-, go-
and Feynman diagrams-package but somehow I cannot reproduce this
on my home-machine, I get lots of errors with missing fonts etc. As I
really wanted to TeX some chess-diagrams I went surfing for the most
recent version of the chess-package and found one for Linux and
one under the Fink-project : the chess-tex package. So, I did a

sudo fink
install chess-tex

forgetting that in good Fink-tradition you can
only install a package by installing at the same time all packages
needed to run it, so I was given a whole list of packages that Fink
wanted to install including a full tetex-system. Did I want to
continue? Well, I had to think on that for a moment but realized that
the iTex-tree was living under /usr/local whereas Fink
creates trees under /sw so there should not really be a problem,
so yes let’s see what happens. It took quite a while (well over an hour
and a half) but when it was done I had a second full TeX-system, but how
could I get it running? Of course I could try to check it via the
command line but then I remembered that there is an alternative
front-end for TeXShop namely iTeXMac
which advertises that it can run either iTeX or the Fink-distribution of
tetex. So I downloaded it, looked in the preferences which indeed
contains a pane

where you can choose between using the standard
tetex-distribution or the Fink-distribution and iTeXMc finds
automatically the relevant folders. So I wrote a quick chess diagram ran
it trough iTeXMac and indeed it produced the graphics I expected! This
little system gave me some confidence in the Fink-distribution so I
fired up the Fink-Commander and looked under categories :
for other TeX packages I could install and there were plenty :
Latex2HTML, Latex2rtf, Feynman, tex4ht and so on. Installing them with
the commander is fun : just click on the package you want and click
‘Install’ under the Source-dropdown window

and in the lower part of the window you can follow the
installation process, whereas the upper part tells you what packages are
already installed and what their version-number is. I still have to
figure out how I will add new style files to this fink-tree and I have
to get used to the iTeXMac-editor but so far I like the robustness of
the system and the easy install procedure, so try it out!

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the best LaTeX system

If you are
a mathematician, you’d better have a functioning TeX on your computer
which I do not have at the moment as I completely erased my HD yesterday
and started brand new. Some time ago this would make me slightly nervous
but as I did install TeX on a number of computers recently I hope to get
it up and running in no time. However, as the install process changes
slighly each time I’ll log here my actions for future reference.
Further this log may convince you to buy a Macintosh because I really do
not know of a better TeX system around.

A good source
for TeX material is the PennState Mac-TeX page. The
first thing to do is to get a good editor such as the freeware BBedit
but the present link directs to the commercial version so has this
Lite version been taken off the net? Fortunately not, a quick
Google tells me that BareBones still maintain a BBedit Lite page from which you can get the 6.1.2
version (it contains a version for OS X and one running under System 9),
so copy the BBedit Folder to the ApplicationFolder and the OSX program
to the Dock.

Next, we will need a spelling checker
like Excalibur which you can find under the
Tools/Utilities of the PennState-site. So download from the links
: Excalibur 4.0 (782k), the Mathematical Lexicon (29k) and the Dutch
dictionary (791k), put these two Folders (or any other Dictionaries you
like to download) in the ExcaliburFolder and copy this to the
ApplicationsFolder and Excalibur itself to the Dock. These matters
settled, it is now time for the big gun : TeX itself.

You can get there from the Engines subsection of the
PennSate site but it’s better to go directly to the excellent TeX on Mac OS X page and follow the instructions (which as I mentioned before tend
to change slightly). I used to get the iInstaller first and
install then the required packages but this time I’ll go for the quick
and dirty route : I’ll get myself the TeX-fat.dmg disk image
(77Mb) which contains TeX and Ghostscript 8 and the i-Installer!
What you obtain is a Volume with the i-Installer, a i-Packages
Folder, some files to read and the TeX-fat.iid. Take the
i-Installer to the Applications/Utilities Folder and to the Dock.
Drag the TeX-fat.iid file on the mounted volume on the i-Installer
application icon. You will be presented with an i-Directory with two
packages on the volume. Install all of them. It is best to install
ghostscript after you have installed TeX as it may contain configuration
material that can take advantage of TeX. I got a warning message but
choose to ignore it, seems to install as expected. Along the way you are
asked a few simple questions (such as paper size, formats you want to
have etc.) when in doubt go for the default! Okay : Task finished! But I
still have to install the ghostscript 8 package but this goes a lot
faster. So we should now have a working TeX installation but are still
missing a front-end. These you can download fllowing the links at
the beginning of the TeX on Mac OS X page. I usually go for TeXShop which is a 3.1Mb disk-image download. Drag
TeXShop into the ApplicationsFolder and the Dock. Find the file named
“pdfsync.sty” in the distribution directory. Drag a copy of this file
to ~/Library/texmf/tex/latex. Here ~/Library is the Library folder in
your home directory. You may need to create the folders texmf, tex, and
latex if they do not already exist. Alternatively, you can gp for iTeXMac (I never figured out what went wrong
between these two developers, but surely it was something

At a later stage I am sure I want to add
new style files from CTAN. So here is the drill : copy them in the


and do a texhash from the command line (as root).
I noticed that lately one do no longer need to adjust parameters to get
a heavy xy-pic file being compiled but if one does not to change any of
the values : be root and go to


increase values and do a texhash. Finally, if you want to
print chess or go-diagrams or other fancy pictures requiring
metafont files here is the drill : be root and copy the .mf files
in an apropriate directory under


(if necessary change the owner of the directory) and
then do a texhash.

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