Recently we reported that Chrome has added support for MathML, a good method for representing maths on the web. Now a comment on a discussion about enabling MathML in Chromium, the open source web browser project from which Google Chrome draws its source code, has announced that this feature will be turned off, for now. The comment, from user firstname.lastname@example.org yesterday, says:
Note that MathML has had to be turned off because the code is not yet production ready.
We hope to turn it on in some future release. We plan to announce this in the Chrome 25 release notes.
Earlier today user email@example.com posted this clarification:
To summarize the current status of this bug: We’d like to enable MathML in Chrome, but the WebKit code still needs further improvements before we can ship it.
Further information: Enabling support for MathML.
via @pkrautz on Twitter.
Update 07/02/2013: Google giveth, and it taketh away. MathML support in Chrome has been disabled until it’s “production-ready”.
Putting maths on the web has always been a tricky proposition. Typesetting notation is a highly complicated procedure, so for years people have got by either by compromising on aesthetics and writing equations in plain, unadorned text, or by using off-line LaTeX compilers to make blurry images of what they’re trying to say.
Quite a few designery visualisations of the prime numbers have been put out on the web recently, to varying degrees of success. Most of the time they look pretty but don’t tell you very much; the most recent example I can think of is El Patrón de los Números Primos by Jason Davies.
A few weeks ago Brent Yorgey posted on his excellent blog The Math Less Traveled some really nice “factorization diagrams“, along with the code to produce them. Straight away, anyone with a text editor and a knack for fancy web coding set to work making the animated version that was so clearly required.
Stephen von Worley has made, I think, the nicest one. He calls it the Factor Conga. Sit back and enjoy the mysteries of the natural numbers as they dance their beguiling dance!
Everyone’s favourite source of excellent maths activities for all ages, NRICH, has been inspired by our change of font and has redesigned their site. It is still full of excellent ideas and teaching resources, as well as puzzles and games. Fans of rounded rectangles will especially like the slick new design and easy-to-use sections for different age groups.
What do you think of the redesign? Do you already use the NRICH site? Will you from now on? Comments below.
Computer Modern is the family of typefaces developed by Donald Knuth for TeX. It’s so good-looking that some scientists do research just so they can write it up in Computer Modern.
I love TeX and everybody knows it, so I was pretty delighted to hear that the cm-unicode project compiles versions of the Computer Modern fonts in a few formats, including TTF. Having the fonts in TTF format means you can use them in non-TeX environments, in particular on the web.
I’ve run the cm-unicode fonts through codeandmore’s @font-face kit generator to get all the weird formats that the various browsers insist on. The result is a set of packages containing everything you need to use the Computer Modern typefaces on the web.
I’ve put up a page containing examples of each face in use and links to the packages. Enjoy!
For several years, Tanya Khovanova’s Number Gossip was an invaluable resource for maths fans whenever they found themselves saying, “that looks like a special number!” It was a simple list of integers and all the interesting facts known about each one; there were prime numbers, odd numbers, evil numbers, perfect numbers, and countless facts about unique properties of numbers.
Those who know things have known for a while that if you put simple-ish sums like
sqrt(4^2+3^2) into Google, it’ll calculate the answer for you. Well, they’ve made life a little bit easier now with the addition of a set of scientific calculator buttons that appear whenever you enter a sum.
Oddly, you can only interact with the calculator by clicking the buttons, not by typing, so it was probably designed with touch devices in mind. It’s also missing an ANS button for using the previous result in further calculation. Anyway, someone’s bound to find it useful when they need a calculator in a pinch.