Re: ***MATH***

William F. Hammond (hammond@csc.albany.edu)
Tue, 16 Jul 1996 15:45:59 -0400 (EDT)


From: "William F. Hammond" <hammond@csc.albany.edu>
Date: Tue, 16 Jul 1996 15:45:59 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <199607161945.PAA24964@phoebe.math.albany.edu>
To: marcush@crc.ricoh.com, www-html@w3.org
Subject: Re: ***MATH***

On Tue, 16 Jul 1996 12:45:31 -0400
"Marcus E. Hennecke" <marcush@crc.ricoh.com> wrote to www-html@w3.org

: On Tue, 16 Jul 1996 17:01:54 +0200, Lineaer Algebraiker
: <ma104@math.uio.no> wrote:
: . . .
: > I just hope the end-product uses some experience from LaTeX, which every 
: > mathematician knows is the only sensible way to write mathematics.
: 
: Not true. The problem with LaTeX's way to write math is that the computer
: can't make sense out of it. It is not structural. For example:
: 
: 	\int f(x)xdx
: 
: How would the computer know that x is the integration variable?  . . .

LaTeX is used to mark up *mathematical text*.

It is not a computer-algebra-system language nor is it intended to
be markup for such.

For mathematical text "\int f(x) dx" is fine.

We could easily overburden HTML-MATH into oblivion by imposing a
requirement that it be a markup powerful enough to service both (1)
computer-algebra-system needs (presumably filterable to whatever CAS)
and (2) mathematical text needs.  For example, use (1) would require a
means of dealing with "typing", whereas for (2) formal typing is not
required.  To achieve (1) would be a huge undertaking.

Let's not get confused about what HTML-MATH should be.

What I have seen at http://www.w3.org/pub/WWW/MarkUp/Math/WG/
suggests that the efforts are pointed in the right direction.

                                   -- Bill