# Where can I find help to typeset mathematics (from the editing help page)?

I found once an instruction how to typeset mathematics on this site, now I came back to ask a question and could not remember it.

Thus I pressed the ? button, to find help on this subject and then, after choosing 'advanced help' only found rudimentary information that LaTeX and MathJax are used with a link to www.mathjax.org But there I could not find what I needed either.

More specifically, at the moment, clicking the help button and then "advanced help" one is taken to the editing-help site which on the subject of typesetting mathematics only has this to say.

LaTeX

Mathematics Stack Exchange uses MathJax to render LaTeX. You can use single dollar signs to delimit inline equations, and double dollars for blocks:

The *Gamma function* satisfying $\Gamma(n) = (n-1)!\quad\forall n\in\mathbb N$ is via through the Euler integral

$$\Gamma(z) = \int_0^\infty t^{z-1}e^{-t}dt\,.$$


It would be good if non-mathematician people can find a link to instructions on typesetting mathematics from that page, the editing help page.

• The way to typeset mathematics on this site is MathJax. LaTeX is in theory completely irrelevant, in practice the relevance is that the syntax is very similar.
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 18:01
• @quid I'm having a hard time finding a help page with the most used symbols to format my question. Would you provide me with a link? Thanks Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 18:05
• – quid Mod
Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 18:06
• @quid thanks, that's what I found once. I bookmarked it now. It should be inside the ? with a link. Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 18:09
• It is in the box format help on the right side. But I agree it should also be findable when perusing the ?
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 3, 2016 at 18:12
• It looks like the question is on LaTeX, not MathJax. In that case, it is not a duplicate. But then it is off-topic here, and instead on-topic at tex.stackexchange.com Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 13:31
• This is not a duplicate of the proposed question/answer in any way. I'm just asking where the link for help regarding formatting LaTeX is, in order to make my question more readable. Also, my intention was to open debate to get a modification of the help displayed after clicking in ? at the editor header, because this seems to be an UX related problem. I was expecting this to be in the ? symbol (Advanced help) and I couldn't find it in any way. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 13:35
• I think that you should tag this as a feature-request. That way the developers will see it. Do describe the requested feature in more detail than I just did. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 15:31
• @JyrkiLahtonen this is not really the request, in any case that request would not be reasonable as it would make little sense that the only help that is given is MJ help. The thing to be done is I think clearly explained in my answer. It is however not clear (to me) what exact change should happen. The issue would be to propose a specific replacement text. I do not think OP is optimally placed to propose a text. Rather this could be discussed in a separate question, afterwards it can be proposed. It could also be discussed here, but then you might at least open the question.
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 15:46
• @GEdgar this would be completely off-topic on TeX - LaTeX it is a question about the Mathematics user-interface.
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 15:49
• @quid: Then I am clueless about what is requested. I came here in response to a flag (by the OP) complaining that this is not a duplicate. Jorgee should edit the post before I reopen, so that the exact requested feature is described. If you understood the request, feel free to edit the question. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 15:57
• @JyrkiLahtonen Did you read my answer? (I expanded it to make it more clear.)
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 15:58
• @JyrkiLahtonen the request is that the information is on the editing help page (which is one of the pages linked under the help-symbol). I edited both the question and the answer to make all this clear (it is hoped).
– quid Mod
Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 16:19
• Ok. I didn't check the links in your answer @quid. Clear now. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 16:26

The tool used to format mathematics on this site is MathJax. In theory LaTeX is not relevant, but in practice the syntax of the language used for input is very similar to LaTeX and this is more widely known, thus it is mentioned there.

The standard reference on this site for mathematical typesetting is MathJax basic tutorial and quick reference which covers most basic things, and quite a few non-basic things.

While it is linked quite visible from the Ask page in the box "How to Format" on the right at the end 'MathJax help'.

Unfortunately as you experienced it is not yet mentioned in the editing help which one finds when clicking the question mark-symbol.

Indeed, the relevant part as in OP, only says:

LaTeX

Mathematics Stack Exchange uses MathJax to render LaTeX. You can use single dollar signs to delimit inline equations, and double dollars for blocks:

The *Gamma function* satisfying $\Gamma(n) = (n-1)!\quad\forall n\in\mathbb N$ is via through the Euler integral

$$\Gamma(z) = \int_0^\infty t^{z-1}e^{-t}dt\,.$$


This is neither completely precise nor overly helpful. I think this is something that should be fixed, via modifying the content of the editing help page slightly. Thanks for pointing it out!

An quick fix would be to simply add a link to the above meta thread there. However, I think the entire paragraph could need a rewrite.

If this questions does not spur this change, I will create a dedicated post for it.