# ASCIIMath

## Question addressed by this recipe

Would you (or your students) like to *easily* produce *good-looking* math formulas on wiki pages using a *simple* calculator-style syntax ?

## Description

## Notes and Comments

ASCIIMath recipe is based on ASCIIMathPHP by Steven Chan -> mailto:kc56 [snail] cornell [period] edu, a PHP port of ASCIIMathML.js from Peter Jipsen.

### Installation

- Download and extract
`asciimath.zipΔ`

to the PmWiki's root directory. - Make sure you have:
*cookbook/asciimath.php*file and*cookbook/asciimath*directory,*pub/asciimath*directory (note to updaters: the*pub/xsl*directory is no more used).

- In your
*local/config.php*file, you must include the*asciimath.php*script:include_once('cookbook/asciimath.php');

Optionally, you may keep the provided Cookbook text pages content (including this one) for further references.

### Markup

Once installed, the following markups are available:

{$ %<parameters...>% formula $} | |

(:eqn <parameters...> :) [= formula =] | (:eqn <parameters...> :) formula (:eqnend:) |

with the following optional parameters:

`height=PIXELS`

to set the height reserved for the formula,`num(=VALUE)`

to display (and eventually set) an equation number,

The markup parameters are filtered and all `+...`

and `-...`

unhandled options are silently discarded. All other parameters are forwarded to the MathML style definition.

### Syntax

(Excerpt from ASCIIMathML.js : Syntax and List of Constants. Please refer to original site for complete references):

The syntax is very permissive and does not generate syntax errors. This allows mathematically incorrect expressions to be displayed, which is important for teaching purposes. It also causes less frustration when previewing formulas.

The parser uses no operator precedence and only respects the grouping brackets, subscripts, superscript, fractions and (square) roots. This is done for reasons of efficiency and generality. The resulting MathML code can quite easily be processed further to ensure additional syntactic requirements of any particular application.

The sample given on ASCIIMathML.js home page will be rendered with following page content:

'''Example:''' Solving the quadratic equation. Suppose {$ %height=70px% ax^2+bx+c=0 text( with ) a!=0 $} We first divide by ''a'' to get {$ %num=1% x^2+b/ax+c/a=0 $} Then we complete the square and obtain {$ %num% x^2+b/ax+(b/(2a))^2-(b/(2a))^2+c/a=0 $} The first three terms factor to give {$ %num% (x+b/(2a))^2=(b^2)/(4a^2)-c/a $} Now we take square roots on both sides and get {$ %num% x+b/(2a)=+-sqrt((b^2)/(4a^2)-c/a) $} Finally we move {$ b/(2a) $} to the right and simplify to get the two solutions: {$ %num=5% x_(1,2)=(-b+-sqrt(b^2-4ac))/(2a) $} |

Suppose We first divide by Then we complete the square and obtain The first three terms factor to give Now we take square roots on both sides and get Finally we move to the right and simplify to get the two solutions: |

### Implementation considerations, Limitations

Currently, formulas are handled in a two step process:

- Generate formulas as XML files of MathML code into the
`pub/asciimath`

directory. - Render generated formulas in wiki page via some
`<iframe>`

tags with the help of the`pmathml.xsl`

and`pmathmlcss.xsl`

stylesheets provided in the`pub/asciimath`

directory.

A formula file is generated only if it didn't previously exist or if formula text has changed. In edition mode (`?action=edit`

) formulas are inconditionnally generated to handle preview feedback.

An extra `?action=purgeqns`

is made available to allow some clean up of the `pub/asciimath`

directory if needed.

Each formula is anchored no its own page with the name `eqn_<number>`

(the order of apparition in the page).

**Nota**- ASCIIMathPHP is based on an outdated version of ASCIIMathML.js (v1.3). Despite the current version has been patched to support more ASCIIMathML.js features, some of them are still lacking or non-functional. You may ask the author for upgrades.

## See also

- Cookbook /
- AMmathjax Add markup to embed math using ASCII MATH by MathJax. (Stable)
- Formula Lightweight rendering of mathematical formulas in wiki pages (Beta)
- FractionsPlus Adds simple markup to write fractions. (Maintained)
- JsMath Add markup to display and embed mathematical formulas in wiki pages using TeX. (Obsolete - use MathJax)
- LaTeXMathJax MathJax support for PmWiki (stable)
- LaTeXMathML Translating LaTeX math notation dynamically to Presentation MathML (Stable)
- LinuxTex Enable TeX markup
- LuaExecute Lets Lua scripts dynamically generate parts of your wiki page (Beta)
- MathJax Add markup to embed math using TeX syntax. (Stable)
- Mathtex Add markup to display and embed several lines of mathematical formulas in wiki pages (testing)
- MimeTeX Add markup to display and embed mathematical formulas in wiki pages (Stable)
- SageCell This allows you to embed an interactive SageCell into your webpage. Sage is an open source alternative to MathLab, Mathematica, and Maple. (Stable)
- SimpleJsMath Notes on modifying the jsMath for a skin (not a complete recipe)
- TrueLatex Enables interpretation and rendering of real LaTeX markups in PmWiki. Support for XeLaTex included in v1.8. (Working perfectly. Very simple to use, customizable and comes with lots of options.)

## Contributors

## Releases Notes

- 2005-06-07 Initial version
- 2005-08-20 Updated to modified ASCIIMathPHP v1.10 (patch submitted to the author), and fixed typo bugs.
- 2005-09-04 Fixed <:vspace> hint with 2.0.0 and above.
- 2006-01-30 Added missing stylesheet and reduced
*pub/*directory pollution. Minor tweaks. - 2006-03-07 Merging unreleased enhancements.
- 2006-10-26 Add RecipeInfo data. Cleaned code.
- 2006-10-28 Minor tweaks.

## Comments

See discussion at ASCIIMath-Talk

**User notes?** : If you use, used or reviewed this recipe, you can add your name. These statistics appear in the Cookbook listings and will help newcomers browsing through the wiki.