Technical Issues

Information note
Date of online publication: 02 July 2015

1Forum Philosophicum relies on Unicode UTF-8 encoding for international characters. Mathematical symbols are also typeset in Unicode, if possible. Because of that we offer the following advice to authors:

Non-standard characters, including international characters and rare scripts

Word processor files

2Files produced in word processors, like Microsoft Office, Apple Pages, Open Office or Word Perfect, should not use non-standard fonts for any non-English character. “Standard fonts” are fonts supplied with major operating systems, like Times New Roman, Arial, Times, Helvetica, Georgia or Linux Libertine. If, after changing your foreign language text to one of these fonts, you cannot read most of the characters, this usually means that your font has its own rules for encoding international characters. In such case, the Editors may suggest using a free re-encoder such as, for instance, GreekTranscoder.

3If your text uses rare or non-European characters, you should provide us with a link to, and use, a font free for educational purposes (Open Font Licence), containing the characters you need and encoding them as Unicode. The Editors know of many such fonts, which use standardized encoding even for such exotic scripts as Egyptian Hieroglyphs or Linear A and B. We will be able, in most cases, to send you instructions about how to re-type your citations. Recurrent use of non-Unicode characters should be treated as an exception and, given the current state of computer typography, can be avoided in most cases.

Latex Files

4We process LaTeX files through the XeTeX engine. XeTeX assumes that the file is encoded as UTF-8. No \inputenc commands are necessary.

5This means that you should type all international characters to the file “as they are” and avoid LaTeX shortcuts for international characters. Do not type accents by means of LaTeX shortcuts such as \`{a} . You should not use any special package for Hebrew, Ancient Greek, Chinese, Sanskrit, Syriac, Arabic or any other language covered by the Polyglossia package, which is the XeTeX replacement for Babel. Just type or paste the characters in Unicode. If you have problems displaying them in your TeX editor, look for a free multilingual font which contains them and set it as your screen font. If you are afraid that we might lose some of your information, consult the manual for Polyglossia before looking for any other solution. It is advisable to include in the file the Polyglossia commands \setotherlanguage{a-language}, \begin{a-language}, and \end{a-language}. This will ensure that a special font may be used without difficulty for passages so marked.


Word processor files

6If you are using symbols and formulae, do not use the Equation Editors provided by your system. Instead, for simple in-line symbols and equations, try using use normal font features of your editor. Symbols should be drawn from the standard Unicode fonts or free mathematical Unicode fonts like STIX or XITS. For display equations, either (1) use the same method or (2) learn the basics of LaTeX equation typesetting and use an editor like LaTeXiT, Latex Equation Editor, Laeqed or OOoLatex. In such cases, include the code for your equations in a separate file.

7Naturally, for mathematics and logic we prefer true LaTeX files.

Latex Files

8All equations will be typeset using the unicode-math package. The package will read the majority of symbols that you are likely to use in a paper employing logical symbolism very well. Symbols defined in standard Latex, amsmath, amsopn, mathtools, colonequals packages will be automatically overtaken by unicode-math. If you invoke unicode-math in the preamble, you do not have to invoke those packages.

9If you draw symbols from other packages, you are kindly asked to limit the number of packages used as much as possible. If you find it necessary to define your own symbols, please include your definitions in a separate file, invoked in the preamble, rather than just defining them within your preamble.

Diagrams and Tables

In word processors,

10use the built-in functions for preparing tables. If you want to include a diagram, it may be the best to prepare it using graphics software such as open-source Inkscape. The result may be included in your initial submission as a picture. For final submission, we will ask for a PDF or eps file and, preferably, for an Inkscape file, as this may be easily converted to LaTeX.

In LaTeX,

11we prefer diagrams typeset in TikZ and supplied as separate files, invoked by \input. Please, mention all TikZ packages you use in the file in its first line as a comment. Due to the limitations of XeTeX, you should not use the TikZ “Pattern” library.

General remarks on LaTeX files

12LaTeX files should be sent in as simple a form as is possible. Do not bother with tweaking the typesetting of your file. The LaTeX file you are sending us does not even have to compile. It should contain:

  1. a preamble referring to all packages needed to typeset your content,

  2. the text body using standard mark-up, with no typesetting or graphic tweaks,

  3. hard-typeset citations, references and bibliography.

13The latter is required because we allow word-processor files, and because of the fact that in a journal that accepts papers on various ancient and medieval traditions it is advisable to use a documentation style in which problems specifically connected with the use of editions of ancient and medieval texts are effectively resolved. Chicago Manual of Style is such a style, but precisely for this reason it is also extremely difficult to implement in its full complexity in any automated form. The record format of BibTeX excludes it, while EndNote only allows for results based on approximations.

14Our advice is that you (a) typeset your paper along with its bibliography using BibTeX and eg. Biber as its engine instead of BibLaTeX, to be sure that Unicode characters are processed, (b) replace your bibliography with the contents of the .bbl file generated by BibLaTeX, and (c) copy-paste your notes from PDF, applying the proper italicizations.

15The Editor is currently working—albeit at a rather leisurely pace—on a series of macros that, hopefully, will eventually make EndNote more compatible with TeX.