Help:Writing formulae

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Simple formulae

It is of course possible to produce simple formulae in Mediawiki articles simply using standard text. For example: e = mc<super>2</super> (written as e = mc<super>2</super>). However, when formulae get more complex, or when it is desirable to present them clearly and as separate entities from the text in which they are referred to, it is better to use LaTeX-type formulae. This means using a special kind of mark-up to generate the formula as a png image file. One useful feature of this is that formulae can be readily copied and pasted between wiki articles and other wordprocessed documents (for example).

Using LaTeX for more complicated formulae

In order to generate LaTeX-type formulae in the wiki it is necessary to insert the correct kind of description of the formula in the <math>...</math> markers. A simple (and relatively intuitive) example might be:

\sqrt{2} which is generated with the mark-up <math>\sqrt{2}</math>

More complicated formulae can be generated using combinations of expressions as outlined on this Wikipedia page.

  • For example:
\sum_{m=1}^\infty\sum_{n=1}^\infty\frac{m^2\,n}{3^m\left(m\,3^n+n\,3^m\right)} is produced with the mark-up <math>\sum_{m=1}^\infty\sum_{n=1}^\infty\frac{m^2\,n} {3^m\left(m\,3^n+n\,3^m\right)}</math>

  • Or:
\phi_n(\kappa) = \frac{1}{4\pi^2\kappa^2} \int_0^\infty \frac{\sin(\kappa R)}{\kappa R} \frac{\partial}{\partial R} \left[R^2\frac{\partial D_n(R)}{\partial R}\right]\,dR is produced with this mark-up <math>\phi_n(\kappa) = \frac{1}{4\pi^2 kappa^2} \int_0^\infty \frac{\sin(\kappa R)}{\kappa R} \frac{\partial}{\partial R} \left[R^2\frac{\partial D_n(R)}{\partial R}\right]\,dR</math>

Manipulating LaTeX-generated formulae

Formulae generated in this way are rendered as png images and as such can be copied from the wiki (right click, copy) into, for example, a document or presentation. This is a convenient way of generating formulae for such applications, as well for presenting mathematical information within the wiki environment.

See also

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