List of packages I might want to remember

This post is rather meant as a memory support for me than to inform anyone else. In this post I plan to maintain a list of packages that I found interesting, useful, remarkable, funny, whatever… but actually have only seldom if ever used and hence have difficulties remembering their existence.

  • abraces by Werner Grundlingh — pro­vides a char­ac­ter key-driven in­ter­face to sup­ple­ment new con­struc­tions of the tra­di­tional \overbrace and \underbrace pairs in an asym­met­ric or ar­bi­trary way.
  • changes by Ekkart Kleinod — markup changes of text, such as ad­di­tions, dele­tions, or re­place­ments
  • cmdtrack by Michael John Downes — The pack­age keeps track of whether a com­mand de­fined in a doc­u­ment pream­ble is ac­tu­ally used some­where in the doc­u­ment. After the pack­age is loaded in the pream­ble of a document, all \newcommand (and sim­i­lar com­mand def­i­ni­tions) be­tween that point and the be­gin­ning of the document will be marked for log­ging. At the end of the doc­u­ment a re­port of com­mand us­age will be printed in the TeX log.
  • collect by Jonathan Sauer — Pro­vides a {col­lect} en­vi­ron­ment, that type­sets text and saves it for later re-use. (A vari­ant col­lects text in a macro.)
  • cookingsymbols by Sven Harder — The pack­age pro­vides 11 sym­bols for type­set­ting recipes: oven, gasstove, topheat, fanoven, gloves and dish sym­bol (among oth­ers). The sym­bols are de­fined us­ing METAFONT.
  • coseoul by Michael Teubner — The pack­age pro­vides “rel­a­tive” com­mands that may be used in place of \chapter, \section, etc. The doc­u­men­ta­tion shows a num­ber of doc­u­ment-man­age­ment sce­nar­ios in which such com­mands are valu­able.
  • csvsimple by Thomas Sturm — The pack­age pro­vides a sim­ple LaTeX in­ter­face for the pro­cess­ing of files with comma sep­a­rated val­ues (CSV); it re­lies on the key value syn­tax sup­ported by pgfkeys to sim­plify us­age. Fil­ter­ing and ta­ble gen­er­a­tion is es­pe­cially sup­ported; how­ever, this lightweight tool of­fers no support for data sort­ing or data base stor­age.
  • cutwin by Peter Wilson — cut win­dows out of para­graphs, and to type­set text or other ma­te­rial in the win­dow
  • dpfloat by Jim Fox — Pro­vides fullpage and leftfullpage en­vi­ron­ments, that may be used in­side a figure, table, or other float en­vi­ron­ment. If the first of a 2-page spread uses a leftfullpage en­vi­ron­ment, the float will only be type­set on an even-num­bered page, and the two floats will ap­pear side-by-side in a two-sided doc­u­ment.
  • easylist by Paul Isambert — cre­ate lists of num­bered items with a sin­gle ac­tive char­ac­ter as the only com­mand
  • engord by Heiko Oberdiek — con­verts num­bers to English or­di­nal num­bers
  • excludeonly by Daniel H. Luecking and Donald Arseneau — The pack­age de­fines an \excludeonly com­mand, which is (in ef­fect) the op­po­site of \includeonly. If both \includeonly and \excludeonly exist in a doc­u­ment, only files “al­lowed” by both will be in­cluded.
  • extract by Hendri Adriaens — pro­vides the means to ex­tract spe­cific con­tent from a source doc­u­ment and write that to a tar­get doc­u­ment.
  • fancypar by Gonzalo Medina — Dec­o­rates in­di­vid­ual para­graphs of a doc­u­ment, of­fer­ing five pre-de­fined styles. The com­mand of­fers an op­tional ‘key-value’ ar­gu­ment with the user may de­fine pa­ram­e­ters of the se­lected style.
  • floatpag by Vy­tas Stat­ule­vičius — The pack­age pro­vides com­mands to spec­ify the pagestyle to be used on ‘or­di­nary’ float pages and ro­tated float pages (from the ro­tat­ing pack­age), as well as a com­mand \thisfloatpagestyle to ap­ply just to the float in which it was is­sued.
  • flowfram by Nicola Talbot — en­ables you to cre­ate frames in a doc­u­ment such that the con­tents of the doc­u­ment en­vi­ron­ment flow from one frame to the next in the or­der in which they were de­fined. This is use­ful for cre­at­ing posters or mag­a­zines, in­deed any form of doc­u­ment that does not con­form to the stan­dard one or two col­umn lay­out.
  • fmtcount by Nicola Talbot — pro­vides com­mands that dis­play the value of a LaTeX counter in a va­ri­ety of for­mats (or­di­nal, text, hex­adec­i­mal, dec­i­mal, oc­tal, bi­nary etc)
  • grid by River Valley Technologies — The pack­age helps to en­able grid type­set­ting in dou­ble col­umn doc­u­ments. Grid type­set­ting (ver­ti­cal align­ing of lines of text in ad­ja­cent columns) is a dif­fi­cult task in LaTeX, and the present pack­age is no more than an at­tempt to help users to achieve it in a lim­ited way.
  • gridset by Markus Kohm — Grid set­ting — also known as strict in-reg­is­ter set­ting — is some­thing, that should be done for a lot of doc­u­ments but is not easy us­ing LaTeX. The pack­age helps to get the in­for­ma­tion needed for grid set­ting. It does not im­ple­ment auto grid set­ting, but there is a com­mand \vskipnextgrid, that moves to the next grid po­si­tion. This may be enough un­der some cir­cum­stances, but in other cir­cum­stances it may fail. Thus grid­set is only one more step for grid set­ting, not a com­plete so­lu­tion.
  • hobby by Andrew Stacey — de­fines a path gen­er­a­tion func­tion for PGF/TikZ which im­ple­ments Hobby’s al­go­rithm for a path built out of Bezier curves which passes through a given set of points.
  • incgraph by Thomas Sturm — tools for in­clud­ing graph­ics at the full size of the out­put medium, or for cre­at­ing “pages” whose size is that of the graphic they con­tain.
  • lambda-lists by Alan Jeffrey — Th­ese list-pro­cess­ing macros avoid the re­as­sign­ments em­ployed in the macros shown in Ap­pendix D of the TeXbook: all the ma­nip­u­la­tions take place in what Knuth is pleased to call “TeX’s mouth”.
  • logreq by Philipp Lehman — The pack­age will do two things: 1) enable pack­age au­thors to use LaTeX com­mands to is­sue re­quests, 2) col­lect all re­quests from all pack­ages and write them to an ex­ter­nal XML file at the end of the doc­u­ment.
  • ltxgrid by Arthur Ogawa — Pro­vides com­mands \onecolumngrid and \twocolumngrid, that switch to one- or two-col­umn set­ting, bal­anc­ing columns on exit from two-col­umn set­ting. Th­ese com­mands dif­fer from the mul­ti­cols en­vi­ron­ment of the mul­ti­col pack­age in that they im­pose no re­stric­tions on the in­ser­tion of floats.
  • magaz by Don­ald Arse­neau — The cur­rent ver­sion does spe­cial formatting for the first line of text in a para­graph.
  • makecell by Olga Lapko — Tabular column heads and multilined cells.
  • mleftright by Heiko Oberdiek — The pack­age de­fines vari­ants \mleft and \mright of \left and \right, that make the de­lim­iters act as \mathopen and \mathclose. Th­ese com­mands ad­dress spac­ing dif­fi­cul­ties in sub­for­mu­las.
  • nth by Donald Arseneau — The com­mand \nth{} gen­er­ates English or­di­nal num­bers of the form 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc. LaTeX pack­age op­tions may spec­ify that the or­di­nal mark be su­per­scripted, and that neg­a­tive num­bers may be treated; Plain TeX users have no ac­cess to pack­age op­tions, so need to re­de­fine macros for these changes.
  • pagegrid by Heiko Oberdiek — puts a grid on the pa­per
  • parnotes by Michael Hughes — paragraph notes
  • placeins by Donald Arseneau — De­fines a \FloatBarrier com­mand, be­yond which floats may not pass; use­ful, for ex­am­ple, to en­sure all floats for a sec­tion ap­pear be­fore the next \section com­mand.
  • quoting by Thomas Titz — an al­ter­na­tive to the LaTeX stan­dard en­vi­ron­ments quo­ta­tion and quote, pro­vides a con­sol­i­dated en­vi­ron­ment for dis­played text.
  • refcount by Heiko Oberdiek — Pro­vides com­mands \setcounterref and \addtocounterref which use the sec­tion (or what­ever) num­ber from the refer­ence as the value to put into the counter, as in ...\label{sec:foo} ... \setcounterref{foonum}{sec:foo}.
  • rerunfilecheck by Heiko Oberdiek — The pack­age pro­vides additional re­run warn­ings if some aux­il­iary files have changed. It is based on MD5 check­sum, pro­vided by pdfTeX.
  • schemata by Charles Schaum — fa­cil­i­tates the cre­ation of top­i­cal schemata, out­lines that use braces (or fac­sim­i­les thereof) to il­lus­trate the break­down of con­cepts and cat­e­gories.
  • snapshot by Michael J. Downes — The snap­shot pack­age helps the owner of a LaTeX doc­u­ment ob­tain a list of the ex­ter­nal depen­den­cies of the doc­u­ment, in a form that can be em­bed­ded at the top of the doc­u­ment. It pro­vides a snap­shot of the cur­rent pro­cess­ing con­text of the doc­u­ment, in­so­far as it can be de­ter­mined from in­side LaTeX. If a doc­u­ment con­tains such a de­pen­dency list, then it be­comes pos­si­ble to ar­range that the document be pro­cessed al­ways with the same ver­sions of ev­ery­thing, in or­der to en­sure the same out­put.
  • spreadtab by Christian Tellechea — The pack­age al­lows the user to con­struct ta­bles in a man­ner sim­i­lar to a spread­sheet. The cells of a ta­ble have row and col­umn in­dices and these can be used in for­mu­las to gen­er­ate val­ues in other cells.
  • sparklines by Andreas Löffler — Sparklines are in­tense, simple, word­like graph­ics (so named by Ed­ward Tufte). A sparkline can be added us­ing the sparkline en­vi­ron­ment. Also, you can add sparkling rectangles for the me­dian and spe­cial sparkling dots in red or blue. The pack­age re­quires pdfla­tex; sparklines can­not ap­pear in a dvi file.
  • subdepth by Will Robertson — equalises the height of sub­scripts in maths. The de­fault be­haviour is to place sub­scripts slightly lower when there is a su­per­script as well, but this can look odd in some situations.
  • texapi by Paul Isambert — util­ity macros to write for­mat-in­de­pen­dent (and -aware) pack­ages. It is sim­i­lar in spirit to the etool­box, ex­cept that it isn’t tied to LaTeX
  • totcount by Vasileios Koutavas — The pack­age records the value that was last set, for any counter of in­ter­est; since most such coun­ters are sim­ply in­cre­mented when they are changed, the recorded value will usu­ally be the max­i­mum value.
  • trimspaces by Will Robertson and Morten Høgholm — allows you to ex­pand­ably re­move spaces around a to­ken list (com­mands are pro­vided to re­move spaces be­fore, spaces af­ter, or both); or to re­move surround­ing spaces within a macro def­i­ni­tion, or to de­fine space-stripped macros.
  • tcolorbox by Thomas Sturm — framed boxes with heading line
  • truncate by Donald Arseneau — Truncate text to a specified width. The pack­age will by de­fault break at word bound­aries, but pack­age op­tions are of­fered to per­mit breaks within words.
  • wiki by Uwe Lück — wiki markup in LaTeX documents
  • xesearch by Paul Isambert — The pack­age finds strings (e.g. (parts of) words or phrases) and ma­nip­u­lates them (ap­ply any macro), thus turn­ing each word or phrase into a pos­si­ble com­mand.
  • xint by Jean-François Burnol — The bun­dle pro­vides four pack­ages: — xint, which pro­vides ex­pand­able TeX macros that im­ple­ment the ba­sic arith­metic op­er­a­tions of ad­di­tion, sub­trac­tion, multiplication and di­vi­sion, as ap­plied to ar­bi­trar­ily long num­bers rep­re­sented as chains of dig­its with an op­tional mi­nus sign; — xintgcd, which pro­vides im­ple­men­ta­tions of the Eu­clidean al­go­rithm, and of its type­set­ting; — xint­frac, which computes frac­tions us­ing xint; — xintseries, which com­putes par­tial sums us­ing xint; and — xintcfrac, which deals with the com­pu­ta­tion of con­tin­ued frac­tions.
  • xmpincl by Maarten Sneep — The XMP (eXten­si­ble Me­ta­data plat­form) is a frame­work to add meta­data to dig­i­tal ma­te­rial to en­hance the work­flow in pub­li­ca­tion. The essence is that the meta­data is stored in an XML file, and this XML stream is then em­bed­ded in the file to which it ap­plies.
  • xlop by Jean-Côme Char­p­en­tier — type­set arith­metic prob­lems ei­ther in-line or “as in school” (us­ing French school con­ven­tions)
  • yax by Paul Isambert — YaX is ad­ver­tised as a key sys­tem, but it rather or­ga­nizes at­tributes in pa­ram­e­ters, which pa­ram­e­ters can be ex­e­cuted, so that YaX is halfway be­tween key man­age­ment and macro def­i­ni­tion
  • zref by Heiko Oberdiek — The pack­age im­ple­ments an ex­ten­si­ble ref­er­enc­ing sys­tem, where prop­er­ties may be de­fined and used in the course of a doc­u­ment. It pro­vides an in­ter­face for macro pro­gram­mers to ac­cess the new ref­er­ence scheme and some mod­ules that use it.

to be continued…

A very related web page: Uwe Lück’s CTAN discoveries.

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