A remark is no doubt in order here about why we have chosen to discuss , instead of any of the (many) other packages that are kicking around today. (E.g. Plain , AMS-, AMS-, LAMS- etc.) The short answer is that the future of -nical typesetting lies with , and more specifically with the efforts of 's supporters to turn the current -standard, , into the much anticipated release of 3. supercedes its immediate predecessor 2.09, and it contains AMS- as a subset of its capabilities. The latter supercedes in some sense AMS- and by combining the outstanding features of both into a single package. In the very beginning (for those of you who can remember back then), there was just of course Knuth's original ``bare-bones'' , which itself is a very powerful engine (remember that all the different ``'s'' out there today have been built on top of Knuth's original ), but lacks many ``ready-made'' useful macros that make typesetting a lot easier for the beginner and for the not so technically inclined/interested user.
If you already use 2.09 and want to migrate to , consider skimming through ``for Authors'', for changes in the newer standard. If you have never used before and want to get started, Lamport's book is probably the best place to begin. On the other hand, if you insist on using an old (or arcane) flavor of \ which you have become comfortable with (over the years), then we assume you are sufficiently competant to support yourself for the most part in its use. If you need help -ing a document in an old version of and run into backward incompatibility problems, then drop by the office and ask for help.
Please bear in mind though that the department's ability to support each and every system out there in the vast ocean of today is severely limited. In fact, a users' support group called TUGboat has been formed, and you might do well to pass your more technical questions directly on to their crew.