TeXmacs Thermodynamics Textbook Milestone

Created by Steven Baltakatei Sandoval on 2021-06-29T01:10Z under a CC BY-SA 4.0 license and last updated on 2021-06-29T01:35Z.

For the past few months I have been transcribing a thermodynamics textbook called "Thermodynamics and Chemistry" into TeXmacs. The textbook is authored by Professor Howard DeVoe, is available online, and is licensed CC BY 4.0.

The project started out because I wanted to solve some thermodynamics problemsets in such a way that others could use my solutions to help them learn on their own. Often, example problems presented in chemistry textbooks are not very verbose for the sake of reducing publication costs of printing the final textbook. However, given the increase in remote learners due to increasingly ubiquitous internet connections (helped along by the COVID-19 Pandemic), textbooks need not be physical artifacts. I believe Libre textbooks, such as those published under Creative Commons licenses that promote sharing, are likely to become more ubiquitous as time goes on. I searched for a thermodynamics textbook that had a Creative Commons license and found the one by Professor Howard DeVoe. I created a GitLab repository where I push TeXmacs source code that others may download in order to compile their own copy of the textbook.

I chose to transcribe the textbook into TeXmacs source code instead of the currently dominant typesetting language/ecosystem of LaTeX for two reasons:

  1. I wanted a typesetting software package that students new to math equations could quickly learn in order to copy/paste/modify my work into their own homework and notes.
  2. As someone currently outside of academia, I am not required to use LaTeX.

As of today, I finished transcribing most of the textbook's fourteen chapters. I still must transcribe the Appendices, the Bibliography database, and various biographical sketches. However, my first-pass best effort has been accomplished.

My transcribed version has a PDF (latest draft here). Check the GitLab repository for updates.

I would like to thank Professor Howard DeVoe for providing the LaTeX source code and images used to build his own version of the textbook. I hope to be able to update my text as he updates his.

I'm open to collaboration via Twitter or email.