[NTG-context] new to ConTeXt

Pablo Rodríguez oinos at web.de
Wed Nov 8 20:35:11 CET 2006

Thomas A. Schmitz wrote:
> On Nov 7, 2006, at 9:20 PM, Pablo Rodríguez wrote:
>> For those ones who were newbies not so long ago or that come from a
>> humanities background, which are the best documents to start learning
>> ConTeXt?
> Difficult to answer this question because it's a bit vague. What kind  
> of documents do you want to produce with ConTeXt? Articles,  
> presentations, textbooks, lists, interactive screen documents?

Many thanks, Thomas, for your reply.

Maybe the issue here is that I want to learn how to do things in ConTeXt
that I was able to do with LaTeX. But this may be the wrong approach to
ConTeXt (because this might not be a good way to learn ConTeXt using
LaTeX as the background example).

I want ConTeXt to produce mainly articles and textbooks (after learning
that it will be easy to figure out presentations). I know some
references, but I don't know which are the best ones.

BTW, are “ConTeXt, an excursion” and “ConTeXt the manual” good
introductions to start with ConTeXt or are they (too) outdated?

> But to give you a few pointers that may or may not be useful:

Thanks, they are useful.

> - The first stop would be the wiki http://wiki.contextgarden.net .  
> There is a section called "Sample documents" that may be a good  
> starting point.
> - You could have a look at recent issues of the PracTeX journal;  
> there is some stuff about ConTeXt in there, and it should be good for  
> beginners.
> - Of course, the Pragma website, but I guess you know that already.
> - Finally, for ancient Greek, there is the ancientgreek module http:// 
> modules.contextgarden.net/t-greek which I find superior to all Greek  
> typesetting in LaTeX (because I wrote the module).

With this particular topic, I'm not sure whether I fully understand what
you mean. For me, input and output must be Unicode (it is the best way
to avoid problems) and this can be done with XeTeX. I don't know how
good the integration with ConTeXt is, but for me and before LuaTeX is
released in an stable version, XeTeX is the only way of dealing with
fonts in TeX. Is there something in your Greek module that cannot be
done with XeTeX?

> Don't hesitate to ask here when you have specific questions, but  
> maybe that can get you started. I am a humanities guy and do all my  
> work in ConTeXt...

Actually, I knew that you were the person I wanted to ask about this.
Some time ago, I read somewhere (on the web) that you switched to
ConTeXt, after having to edit a book with Word. And then I discovered
that you teach Classics at Bonn.

Then, if the question is not too personal (it hope not, but sorry if it
is): how did you learn ConTeXt? Only tinkering with already existing
modules? Did you read any manuals? (Again, if this is not too personal,
I assume that our interests in ConTeXt are similar, although I'm not a
classicist and I don't belong to the academia)

Thanks for your help,


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