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# What is TopTeX

TopTeX is a community for TeX questions and answers. It is part of topanswers.xyz, an open source platform, that is developed with the community in mind and not for-profit.

# TopTeX's scope

The TopTeX community is all about the TeX typesetting engines and their friends.

In one sentence, we consider anything on topic that is included in a TeX installation (like TeX Live, MikTeX, etc.), plus editors dedicated to editing files of any TeX format.

Furthermore questions about how to configure an extensible editor for (La)TeX or about a plugin for such an editor which is TeX related are considered on topic (an example question would be "How to configure editor XY to compile LaTeX files?").

To give you a few ideas, we consider on topic (non-exhaustive):

- TeX, the program
- TeX, the language
- TeX formats, such as plain TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, ...
- packages such as Ti*k*Z, pgfplots, asymptote, metapost, pstricks, ...
- tools to organize references, glossaries and indices such as BibTeX, biblatex, makeindex...
- tools to automate (La)TeX, such as `arara`, `latexmk`, ...
- TeX distributions and their management
- ...

If you're in doubt just ask in our [main chat](https://topanswers.xyz/tex) whether something is considered on topic. We're glad about any benevolent contributor and you'll get a friendly and timely reply!

# TopTeX's not-scope

There are a few software solutions out there which were inspired by (La)TeX, but don't use TeX, those are not considered on topic here. This category includes tools such as:

- MathJax
- KaTeX
- Patoline
- SILE

Questions about extensible editors which don't directly deal with TeX are *not* considered on topic. An example for such a question would be "How to install plugins for editor XY?".

For explicit bug reports and feature requests, please follow the communication channels indicated in the documentation and user manuals of the individual packages or programs. This will ensure that your request will reach the author or maintainer.

# Using this site's interface

## Voting

You can vote on posts by awarding stars. The stars are located at the bottom left of a message. 

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 1.06.03 PM.png](/image?hash=767366195b43c8af9f1b79e48f78047e98cd994d1bf2c03f616092fcd230a079)

If you awarded the maximum number of stars, they will be solid as shown above, otherwise just outlined. Regular questions cannot be awarded with stars, but both meta questions and answers can. The number of stars, `n`, you can award depends logarithmically on the number of stars, `s`, you have gathered previously, `n=int(log(10,s)+1)`. Initially you can award one star, once you got 10 or more stars two, if you have 100 or more three, etc. 

## Starring and flagging

You can star chat messages by clicking on the star symbol that appears on the top right of a message when hovering the mouse arrow in this region. This applies both to the messages in the main chat as well as the messages in the chats that are specific to questions. There are no rules for that but if you support an opinion contained in the message, you may star, but also if you just enjoy reading it. Once you starred a message, there will be a full star, and if others starred it as well, there will be some number of stars.

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.32.00 PM.png](/image?hash=3c93aa7a91425ae3d47e0442556b96f2e761de5860f69e81b636884448228277)

If you did not star the message, you will see the outline of a star.

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.32.21 PM.png](/image?hash=c50a60cf9da7061b800441f665be706ef16c0acbf74b1ce0b3c89098d52e861f)

If your message gets starred, these will again be full stars, but in a different color.

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.32.31 PM.png](/image?hash=e5bc20ca63107778159d7a436b5ba6b6b041a4f361f6ed6beb81ed81cbf7f1fb)

Needless to say that you cannot star your own messages. 

Likewise, you can flag messages that you deem abusive by clicking on the flag symbol which is located a bit below the star. Use flags rarely and only if the message is abusive, not if you just happen to disagree with its content. You can undo flaggings, i.e. if you flag a message by accident, or if it lost its abusive nature after an edit, just click on the flag symbol again.

## Editing

You can edit your posts after publication. You can also edit your messages up to two weeks after posting.

## Notifications

You may receive notifications. Then the top of the chat column of your window may look like this:

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.55.39 PM.png](/image?hash=01ed1c18445940b738face11152fdb595be1f75601b231471afad982b1091c70)

Notice the two tiny `1`s with an orange background. Once you click on notifications, you will get something like this:

![Screen Shot 2020-09-12 at 12.55.05 PM.png](/image?hash=e1815fa4085be90d986ce2d2055fe20aaef8f9b6f0246fb574ec89a8f70fbff4)

You can then discard messages and/or just click on the thread they are posted under to see the context, and, if appropriate, reply, star, or in rare cases possibly flag. Notice that notifications may not always disappear if you are active in different communities. However, by pressing `<shift>+<reload>` you can clean up "resistent" notifications.

You may reply to messages by clicking on the arrow right of the flag that pops up when hovering over the message.

![Screen Shot 2020-10-11 at 4.17.54 PM.png](/image?hash=78a203df336643a4df591c4e529e7bbd061b759574affa4a163e2d507b158492)

The other tiny orange `1` in the top right corner opens an overview of the last visited chat rooms and indicates new activity in those.

Enter question or answer id or url (and optionally further answer ids/urls from the same question) from

Separate each id/url with a space. No need to list your own answers; they will be imported automatically.