**MathML (Mathematical Markup Language)
provides the set of tags with which to express mathematical equations on
web pages**.

Before MathML there was T_{E}X (pronounced
"Tek"), a typesetting system developed prior to the Web by Donald Knuth
in the 70s and 80s. T_{E}X has set the standard for
professional-looking math on digital devices, especially for print
media. T_{E}X and an extension called
L^{A}T_{E}X have
traditionally been what math people use for mathematical documents.

MathML is meant to play a similar role on the Web. Firefox's Gecko
layout system has built-in T_{E}X-quality support
for mathematics that can be styled and scripted to achieve exciting
dynamic effects visually and computationally. MathML is another of those
things that really set Firefox apart from other web browsers. Figure 6-2 shows an example of
MathML content.

Figure 6-2. Built-in MathML rendering in Firefox

No, the screenshot shown in Figure 6-2 is not made up of
images produced by
L^{A}T_{E}X2HTML (or some
such) and included in the page with `<img>`

tags. Nor is the page displayed
using plug-ins. What you see is Firefox mastering mathematics with as
much dexterity as any mathematician. Firefox does the formatting
natively. Now, you too can harness this
T_{E}X-quality math power by using MathML.

The example in this hack zooms into a basic template typeset according to W3C standards. It shows how the screenshot ...

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