For you to be able to use mathematics.co.za properly we must first check (1) that your web browser can display mathematical expressions and (2) that your web browser can display mathematical graphics.
The purpose of this page is to get you started with using this web site, and to ensure that you have the right web browser.
(1) Mathematics on the web
For the first requirement, the mathematics.co.za web site is structured to display a variety of mathematical expressions, primarily written in the LaTeX language.
There are two renditions now given of two formulas. The first is produced using LaTeX (which may or may not display correctly in your browser) and the second is an image (which should always display correctly in all browsers).
Rendition 1 : Using LaTeX
Rendition 2 : Using Images
Here is what they should look like, which has been included as an image purely for comparison purposes.
If the two renditions are NOT the same
If the first does not display then you will have to change your browser to ensure that it works properly.
This has been tested with the following desktop web browsers – all render correctly unless indicated otherwise:
- Firefox 19.0.2 (type Alt+H, A)
- Internet Explorer 9.0.18 (type Alt+X, A)
- Google Chrome Version 25.0.1364.172 m (select Customise and control Chrome, and then About Google Chrome
It has also been tested with the following mobile web browsers – all render correctly unless indicated otherwise:
- FireFox Mobile 19.0.2 (options > more > settings > About Firefox)
- Opera Mini 7.5.32193 (Opera > Help > About Opera) – DOES NOT RENDER CORRECTLY
- Default Android Browser (current version) – used on Samsung Galaxy Note Version 1
(2) Mathematical illustrations and graphics on the web
Similar to the handling of mathematical expressions, it is also essential to be able to display mathematical diagrams, such as are required for graphs and geometry, and which are also used throughout the mathematical syllabus to enhance and complement the description of mathematical notations.
We now need to determine whether your browser can support SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) which is what I have used to create most of the diagrams and mathematical illustrations for this web site.
You will see three renditions below, each of which is a different way to display the same illustration, which is a large yellow circle.
Rendition 1 : Using inline SVG
The most common type of diagrams used on these pages are those which are rendered using inline SVG. Please check if the following is displaying the yellow circle correctly.
If there is nothing between the START and END above, then your browser does not display this SVG correctly.
Rendition 2 : Using SVG files
The second way in which I have created these pages is to use SVG files, which is most useful for complex diagrams, and also for diagrams which are shared over many pages.
Rendition 3 : Using an img file
Finally, this is the image file created in JPG or PNG which is loaded by the browser, this will work in every case, so long as the file can be found!.
If the SVG is not displaying
If the SVG inline or SVG files are not loading, then you will need to use a browser which allows for these. The web browsers are evolving rapidly and should support these new features shortly if they do not do so already. Otherwise, upgrade your browser or use a browser which is known to support the SVG features.
This has been tested on the following web browsers:
- Firefox 19.0.2 (type Alt+H, A) : Inline (OK), SVG File (NOT OK)
- Internet Explorer 9.0.18 (type Alt+X, A) : Inline (OK), SVG File (NOT OK)
- Google Chrome Version 25.0.1364.172 m (select Customise and control Chrome, and then About Google Chrome) : Inline (OK), SVG File (NOT OK)
Since all of the browsers do not appear to support SVG Files, I will be checking whether this is a limitation in WordPress, which is the system to manage the content for this web site.
It has also been tested on the following mobile web browsers:
- FireFox Mobile 19.0.2 (options > more > settings > About Firefox) : Inline (OK), File (NOT OK)
- Opera Mini 7.5.32193 (Opera > Help > About Opera) – Inline (NOT OK), SVG File (NOT OK)
- Default Android Browser (current version) – used on Samsung Galaxy Note Version 1 : Inline (NOT OK), SVG File (NOT OK)
As a mobile browser, it appears that FireFox is the best for Mobile Web on Mobile Phones and tablets (although Safari not yet tried). Opera does not support either SVG or LaTeX at this point.
For the laptops, all of the browsers seem to be OK, except for the problem with the loading of SVG File, which (as I stated above) may be a WordPress problem rather than a limitation of the web browsers themselves.
I am hoping for this to be an interactive site, and thus you will need to be able to express your comments in mathematical terms as well. This will means that your comments will need to include LaTex, and as a part of my work in developing this site I will be incuding a short tutorial on how to create LaTex expressions so that when you ask questions and when you respond you do this using proper mathematical notation and not in words, since most mathematics is quite challenging to represent in words.