# A gentle introduction to TEX: A manual for self study by Michael Doob

By Michael Doob

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Additional info for A gentle introduction to TEX: A manual for self study (TEXniques)

Example text

2 Horizontal alignment with more sophisticated patterns The \settabs environment is not difficult to use, and once the pattern is set, it can be used repeatedly in different portions of the text that follows. It does have some drawbacks, however. For one, the column size must be set before the entries are known. Also, even though in one case we wanted the third column to be boldface, it had to be specified in each line. These problems can be handled more easily by using the \halign environment.

The idea is somewhat similar to the template line in the \halign environment. First, let’s look at the case where there is one parameter. In this case a control sequence is defined by \def\newword#1{. }. The symbol #1 may appear between the braces (several times) in the definition of \newword. The material between the braces acts like a template. When \newword{. } appears in the text, it will use the definition of \newword with the 57 A TEX intro (Canadian spelling) Section 7: Rolling your own material between the braces inserted into the template at every occurrence of #1 in the original definition.

Vrule # \vrule \cr \noalign{\hrule} & & . . & \cr \noalign{\hrule} ... \noalign{\hrule} & & . . & \cr \noalign{\hrule} } } 54 Section 7 Rolling your own In this section we’ll create new control words. The making of these new definitions, also called macros, is one of the most powerful techniques available in TEX. For the first application of this facility, we’ll see how a new definition can save a lot of typing by substituting short strings for long ones.