Notations Around the World: Census and Exploitation
Mathematical notations around the world are diverse. Not as much as requiring computing machines’ makers to adapt to each culture, but as much as to disorient a person landing on a web-page with a text in mathematics.
In order to understand better this diversity, we are building a census of notations: it should allow any content creator or mathematician to grasp which mathematical notation is used in which language and culture. The census is built collaboratively, collected in pages with a given semantic and presenting observations of the widespread notations being used in existing materials by a graphical extract. We contend that our approach should dissipate the fallacies found here and there about the notations in “other cultures” so that a better understanding of the cultures can be realized.
The exploitation of the census in the math-bridge project is also presented: this project aims at taking learners “where they are in their math-knowledge” and bring them to a level ready to start engineering studies. The census serves as definitive reference for the transformation elements that generate the rendering of formulæ in web-browsers.
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