Tag Archives: LaTeX

Automated way to check for PGF version

This is one way to check for the version of PGF that is installed in an automated way. First create a tex file with the following contents:


Say you named it test-pgf-version.tex. Then:

pdflatex test-pgf-version.tex
cat test-pgf-verson.log | grep PGFVersion | sed ‘s/PGFVersion=//’

should display the version number. I happen to need to do this from R so using similar logic:

logFile <- ‘testpgfversion.log‘    
logContents <- readLines( logFile )
match <- logContents[ grep(‘PGFVersion=‘, logContents) ]
version <- gsub([=AZaz]‘,”,match)

which accomplishes the same task as the second line above.

Local texmf tree on Mac OS X

This is mostly a reference for a me but also a good reminder for those using TeXLive on Mac OS X (a.k.a. MacTeX). From the document “What Is Installed.pdf” in /Applications/TeX:

Incidentally, if you want to add files to TEX Live for one particular user, install them in a similar tree ~/Library/texmf where ~/Library is the Library folder in that user’s home directory. The folder texmf and other folders for the tree will have to be created. For instance, TEX will find any file in ~/Library/texmf/tex or a subfolder of this location, LATEX will find any file in ~/Library/texmf/tex/latex or a subfolder of this location, and BibTEX will find any .bib file in ~/Library/texmf/bibtex/bib or a subfolder of this location, and any .bst file in ~/Library/texmf/bibtex/bst or a subfolder of this location. It is not necessary to use texhash when adding files to this local tree.

pgfSweave now on CRAN

At long last pgfSweave has finally made its way to CRAN.


The pgfSweave R package is about speed and style of graphics. For speed, the package provides capabilities for “caching” graphics generated with Sweave on top of the caching funcitonality of cacheSweave. For style the pgfSweave package facilitates the integration of R graphics with LaTeX reports through the tikzDevice package and eps2pgf utility. With these tools, figure labels are converted to LaTeX strings so they match the style of the document and the full range of LaTeX math symbols/equations are available.

The backbone of pgfSweave is a a new driver for Sweave (pgfSweaveDriver). The driver provides new chunk options tikz, pgf and external on top of the cache option provided by cacheSweave.

This package started as a fork (hack) of cacheSweave to suit our own narrow purposes and has since become a valuable tool for much of our own work. We hope you will find it useful as well.

-Cameron Bracken and Charlie Sharpsteen