2017-01-13

Twelve LaTeX packages to get your paper accepted

(with Abhik Roychoydhury and Aditya Kanade)

Why do some people get all their papers accepted, and others do not?  You may already know that in many disciplines, using the LaTeX typesetting system correlates with having your paper accepted (in contrast to, say, Word).  What you may not know is that there is a number of LaTeX packages whose usage may be crucial for success.  Here we go:
  1. The pagefit package.  This immensely useful package makes your paper exactly fit within a given page limit, applying a genetic search algorithm to reduce baseline distances, white space, font sizes, or bibliographic references until it exactly fits.  Just write \usepackage[pages=12,includingbibliography]{pagefit} and enjoy.  
  2. The autocite package. Cites all relevant work that needs to be cited.  The "citepc" option additionally cites the entire program committee, whether their work is relevant or not.
  3. The translate package.  Auto-translates your paper into a given target language (default is English).  Just type \begin{translate}Endlich kann ich in meiner Muttersprache schreiben!\end{translate} to obtain "Finally, I can write in my mother language!" (Hint: You can also translate English into English to fix typos and other mistakes.)
  4. The significance package.  Alters your experiment settings until results become statistically significant, repurposing LaTeX's built-in formatting algorithm for advanced p-hacking.  Use as \usepackage[p=0.05]{significance}.
  5. The boast package.  This extends the nlp package to automatically alter your writing style according to a set of parameters.  For instance,
    • \set\relevance=\Large % Set relevance (values range from \tiny to \Huge)
    • \set\novelty=0.5 % Sets novelty claimed, from 0.0 to 1.0. 
    • \set\formality=0.75 % Increase or decrease formal content (formulas, theorems, greek letters, etc.). For the humanities, use lower values.
    Hint: If you get a LaTeX "overclaim" warning, reduce these values; you can also use the [maximize] option to have LaTeX find a maximum without overclaim.  Also, be sure to reduce \relevance for sections that discuss related work.
  6. The accept package.  This package does what it says: All our published papers have a line that says \usepackage{accept}.  If you do not have the accept package, at least try to comment out the \usepackage{reject} line found in so many journal submission templates.
  7. The coauthors package.  Automatically searches for co-authors who have done well-respected work related to the paper and includes them as co-authors to boost chances of acceptance. The option [silent=true] (default) does so without their knowledge.  Use [related=false] to include any tall figure (say, Paul Erdős) as co-author.
  8. The prostrate package.  Puts an acknowledgement section at the end profusely thanking the reviewers, even if the reviews were not even close to being relevant, helpful, insightful, or constructive. After all, you should always thank the reviewers for accepting your paper that you yourself would not have accepted!  Automatically expands to fit the page limit; see the pagefit package, above.
  9. The autosubmit package.  Run your paper through LaTeX and have it automatically submitted to the most suitable venue.  Use [field=physics] to narrow down the field or [conference=ICSE] to explicitly specify the venue.  Be careful: These options also accept wildcards[field=humanities,journal=*] will auto-submit your paper to all humanity journals at once.  (See also the autoreject package.)
  10. The award package.  Makes your paper win an award, as in \usepackage[bestpaper]{award}. Options include "impact", "beststudentpaper", and more; be aware that "bestpaper" and "impact" are mutually exclusive.  Donald Knuth and Leslie Lamport have extended this package with a "turing" award option, but never publicly released their extension;  Philip Roth is said to have asked for a "nobel" option.
  11. The trump package.  Makes your paper great again, but shortens it to 140 characters, dismissing all scientific evidence.  So overrated!
  12. The tenure package.  Keep on writing to obtain this package.  If you can also get a relocation package, a healthcare package, and a retirement package, you'll be all set!
Note that these packages are normally customized towards your institution (using institution-specific relevance and boast settings, for instance).  Therefore, you will not find these packages as part of your standard LaTeX distribution; use your institutional download site instead. Keep on LaTeXing!

Coming up next: "More and more schools prohibit the infamous 'autowrite' package", and "How to use the 'politically' package in the correct way."

8 comments:

  1. :) hhaha I love the autocite package:) so true

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  2. I would love the pagefit package! :)

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  3. Yes, yes, BUT: Beware of the feature interactions!
    For instance:

    (1) Carelessly using 'prostrate' together with 'coauthors'
    may result in your acknowledgments section being phrased
    in Chinese.

    (2) Using 'autocite' plus 'coauthors' together with 'pagefit'
    can overheat your CPU -- your office may catch fire!

    (3) Using 'coauthors' with 'autosubmit' and not paying careful
    attention to the options used may result in some of your
    coauthors reporting to a mental institution.
    (I have seen claims that using the 'universalconsent'
    package will fix this, but I am not sure this has successfully
    been tried in practice.)

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  4. with all these advances in AI, it won't be long before LaTeX encapsulates the whole paper writing process in an improved SCIgen, \make{paper} is not far off! https://pdos.csail.mit.edu/archive/scigen/

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  5. Honestly, I think the entire planet is waiting for the pagefit package.

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  6. LOL. BTW, I have found a package which combines proofreading and spellchecking to create a proof-checker (Using Coq/Isabelle under the hood) to avoid reviewer comments on text that follows \begin{theorem}.

    ReplyDelete