I’ve been using MathML for a while now for some of my documentation work on 3D graphics. Unfortunately the only way at the moment is to use XHTML 1.1 modular doctype to include either or both of MathML and SVG. In HTML 5 these have become embedded content parts of the specification. So for example, using MathML would be as simple as doing:
Unfortunately the only browser to support either MathML or (parts of) HTML 5 at this moment is Firefox 3.5. However, the MathML or SVG embedded content did not render under 3.5. After reading John Resig’s post about a new HTML parsing engine in Mozilla’s Gecko engine I set out to test this engine’s support by downloading the latest nightly and setting
about:config and ‘lo and behold, it renders as expected.
I discovered FireMath today, an addon for Firefox that makes editing MathML much, much easier. Give it a spin. I just wish more browsers than Firefox supported MathML out of the box.
Over at the IE blog Dean Hachamovitch talked about how the new Internet Explorer will be called IE8.
Yes, I am as amazed as you about this. I mean, who would have figured that after IE6 and IE7 we would get an IE8? Yes, I am being sarcastic.
Of course we can only hope they will finally ditch their proprietary muck and start supporting CSS 2.1 better. Heck, maybe we can even see some MathML support. Because in related and definitely more exciting news Opera’s 9.5 beta gained MathML support. It is not fully implemented yet, but they’re actively asking people to provide results. I am secretly wishing for a web developer uprising that will enforce websites using standards and limit the workaround hacks.
Opera 9 can support some MathML using a UserJS MathML script. Definitely worthwhile to give it a try.
In related news Opera 9.01 got released.
I am getting so tired of the Internet Explorer shows it perfectly, but it fails with browser X or Y rhetoric.
Once and for all people: the Internet has standards. That Microsoft choses not to play nice with this is not the fault of the people developing sites that do play nice with standards.
Instead, bother Microsoft to fix their browser’s dumb behaviour.
I use MathML. Why? Because it just makes sense for mathematics on the websites.
On my DragonFly I had to do the following:
Installed X.org 6.8.1 or .2. Enable xfs (the X font server) by adding
From ports install
Extract http://www.mozilla.org/projects/mathml/fonts/bakoma/texcm-ttf.zip to /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/TTF.
Extract from http://support.wolfram.com/mathematica/systems/windows/general/latestfonts.html the 4.1 TrueType fonts to /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/TTF.
In /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/TTF do:
# ttmkfdir > fonts.scale
This will update fonts.scale and fonts.dir, check them with cat or more to see if they contain references to the extracted new .ttf files.
Change /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fs/config to have /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/urwfonts-ttf added to catalogue.
Also add /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/urwfonts-ttf as a FontPath to /etc/X11/xorg.conf.
# xset fp+ /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/urwfonts-ttf
# xset fp rehash
Edited $HOME/.fonts.conf and added:
<!DOCTYPE fontconfig SYSTEM "fonts.dtd">
<edit name="family" mode="append" binding="strong">
<string>Standard Symbols L</string>
user_pref("font.mathfont-family", "Math1, Math2, Math4");
There seem to be some bugs still, at least in displaying the W3C test suite.
And to the question why people still use Windows try setting up your X environment to properly support MathML with Firefox.
Truly, using new fonts within X is a black art still reminiscent of dark and medieval times when we did not know better. I thought we would have progressed that stage by now.
From a user perspective Windows definitely wins hands down in this, drag a file to a Fonts folder, done.
No, X wants us to use crazy incantations of mkfontdir, mkfontscale, fc-cache, ttmkfdir, xset with various fp options and hope xlsfonts shows the font you are after.
Users do NOT want to be bothered with foundries, weights, encoding types, and what not. They just want to add a font, select it in their favourite application and go: “owww, pretty!”
Is that, anno 2004, too much to ask?