Graduate Studies

 

Date of this Version

8-2-2010

Abstract

MathType (current version 6.6) is a third-party software package for typesetting and editing complex mathematical equations and expressions. It is sold and distributed by Design Science, Inc. headquartered in Long Beach, California. It sells for about $100 ($60 academic), and is offered free as a 30-day trial.

It is a macro-driven package that serves as an “add-on” to Microsoft Word or other editing programs.

MathType has significant compatibility issues, however, with Adobe Acrobat; and generating PDF files from documents containing MathType elements is far from straightforward. We recently encountered a dissertation that had used MathType to set 100+ mathematical expressions in an MS Word file, and all attempts to generate a PDF file from the Word document were unsuccessful.

Users may wish to refer to Design Science’s TechNote #69 for further information, although the solutions proposed there did not work for this user. These included such radical steps as deleting and replacing system fonts, enabling macros, etc.

Master’s and doctoral candidates who intend to submit a PDF file of their thesis or dissertation (as is required) should avoid using MathType software unless they are prepared (and able) to generate a proper and reliable PDF file on their own. I cannot (and will not attempt to) make a usable PDF file from Word documents with MathType elements.

We have not experienced problems with files using MS Word’s own equation editor or with files typeset using τεκ or LAτεκ.

If you have doubts or issues or concerns about other packages, I am happy to test any sample files before you go too far down any road. It is tragic to come up against the deposit deadline and find that some rogue software package is creating problems for everyone.

Good luck, and happy “mathing.”

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