4 LATEX Primer
This section is a brief introduction to LATEX
concepts and syntax, to provide authors enough information to author documents productively
without having to become ``TEXnicians.''
Perhaps the most important concept to keep in mind while marking up Python documentation is
that while TEX is unstructured, LATEX was designed as a
layer on top of TEX which specifically supports
structured markup. The Python-specific markup is intended to extend the structure provided by
document classes to support additional information specific to Python.
contain two parts: the preamble and the body. The preamble is used to specify certain metadata
about the document itself, such as the title, the list of authors, the date, and the class
the document belongs to. Additional information used to control index generation and the use
of bibliographic databases can also be placed in the preamble. For most authors, the preamble
can be most easily created by copying it from an existing document and modifying a few key
pieces of information.
The class of a document is used to place a document within a broad
category of documents and set some fundamental formatting properties. For Python
documentation, two classes are used: the
manual class and the
class. These classes also define the additional markup used to document Python concepts and
structures. Specific information about these classes is provided in section 5, ``Document Classes,'' below. The first thing in the
preamble is the declaration of the document's class.
After the class declaration, a number of macros are used to provide further
information about the document and setup any additional markup that is needed. No output is
generated from the preamble; it is an error to include free text in the preamble because it
would cause output.
The document body follows the preamble. This contains all the printed components of the
document marked up structurally. Generic LATEX
structures include hierarchical sections, numbered and bulleted lists, and special structures
for the document abstract and indexes.