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[Orgmode] A few quirks of org's Latex passthrough

From: Scot Becker
Subject: [Orgmode] A few quirks of org's Latex passthrough
Date: Thu, 16 Apr 2009 12:18:17 +0100

Prompted by Chris Gray's request for org markup in Latex environment,
I thought I'd submit a note (for his sake and others') about a few
quirks of org-latex-export's handling of embedded Latex markup in org
documents.  I have been puzzling with these for a while but only
discovered the problem triggers (and workarounds) this morning just
before Chris' mail arrived.  These are both about inline Latex

I use a few custom commands \mycommand{like this}, and occasionally
have to invoke the odd bit of standard LaTeX markup, for example /when
\textbf{embedding bold text} inside italics/.  For the most part,
these work fine, but I've discovered the following two 'gotchas' that
happen when exporting to LaTeX.

1.  Inline Latex commands get their final curly brace escaped with a
slash (and therefore don't work) if they spill over into another
line, i.e. if they contain one or more newlines.   This is true also
for standard LaTeX commands like \textbf{} and \emph{}.

\mycommand{So, for example this
wrapped setence gets a slash added just after the
final period and before the curly brace.}  Org is quite helpfully
escaping the slash for LaTeX, apparently.

\mycommand{no trouble if it's all on one line}

The workaround of putting all such commands on one line is no hardship
for me, since I use visual-line-mode in Emacs 23 and keep my
paragraphs as single logical lines.  It might be harder for those
accustomed to hard-wrapping their paragraphs.

2.  If you have two inline Latex commands on the same logical line,
org's latex export doesn't treat the text between them in its usual
manner.  Italics get processed, but not the latexification of quotes.
("this" --> ``this'') For example:

I have a short custom command to tell Latex to invoke a
Hebrew-language right-to-left environment when I want to refer to a
Hebrew phrase like this: \heb{phrase here}.  But then if I "quote
something,"  and follow that by another \heb{phrase}, the inner
quotation marks don't get processed.  Oddly enough, this problem is
only triggered when there is an inline Latex command both before and
after the  quoted material on the same logical line.

Now if you put a footnote in between those two inline Latex commands,
the output is really nutty:

And \heb{phrase here} with a footnote[fn:: Footnote here.]  I'm not
sure what funky org commands get invoked, but again, only when
bookended by an inline Latex command like \heb{phrase here}.

The nutty output is a number in square brackets like this[1], with the
following at the bottom of the document:

\$\^{}{1}\$ Footnote here.

This has a the opposite work-around:  break the lines so those
elements are not all on the same logical line. Put in a few newlines.
Latex, of course doesn't care.  Do take care not to start a newline
with the org-footnote, like this
[fn:: Org doesn't parse a footnote command which starts on its own line.]

This is just "for what it's worth" to those who use org-mode as a
front-end to writing for LaTeX.


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