Setting the Stage for Open Mathematical Documents
In this part of the book we will look at the problem of marking up mathematical knowledge and mathematical documents in general, situate the OMDoc format, and compare it to other formats like OpenMath and MathML.
The OMDoc format is an open markup language for mathematical documents and the knowledge encapsulated in them. The representation in OMDoc makes the document content unambiguous and their context transparent.
OMDoc approaches this goal by embedding control codes into mathematical documents that identify the document structure, the meaning of text fragments, and their relation to other mathematical knowledge in a process called document markup. Document markup is a communication form that has existed for many years. Until the computerization of the printing industry, markup was primarily done by a copy editor writing instructions on a manuscript for a typesetter to follow. Over a period of time, a standard set of symbols was developed and used by copy editors to communicate with typesetters on the intended appearance of documents. As computers became widely available, authors began using word processing software to write and edit their documents. Each word processing program had its own method of markup to store and recall documents.