# Tagged Questions

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### Use of ternary operator in formal writing

I would like to write $$f(x) = \begin{cases}1&\mbox{if }x = 1\\ 0&\mbox{otherwise.}\end{cases}$$ However, this eats up a lot of vertical space for a very simple statement. Is there agreed ...
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### What to do about Secondary Results that are of Independent Interest?

I am thinking about writing an online article about a simplified algorithm for a problem $P$, for which efficient solutions are already known, whose implementation is however challenging. My ...
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### Style guide for referring to past work

Has anyone written or expressed a coherent position on how to refer to mathematical results (theorems, proofs) by past authors? Even if there are no hard and fast rules, I find it helpful to have a ...
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### Correction symbols used for mathematical texts [closed]

When proof reading and correcting a mathematical text, I sometimes see people use special notation symbols in the margin to indicate correction, deletion, replacement and so on. Is there any standard ...
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### When do you use “s” apostrophe to refer to authors ($e.g.$ of inequalities)? [closed]

I remarked that there does not seem to be a general rule whether one should use or not an "s" apostrophe for inequalities For example, we can encounter Hölder's inequality, but Minkowski or Sobolev ...
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### How to cite authors from any country correctly?

It has always seemed to me that the Mathematical Community gives a high importance to the act of properly citing an author (Do not write Erdos! It's Erdős. Cauchy must be read as in French, not as in ...
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### “Let” versus “for all” [closed]

I have noticed that many authors tend to use "let" instead of "for all". For example, they write something like this: Let $n$ be an even natural number. Then also $n^2$ is even. I wonder, why ...
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### Most intriguing mathematical epigraphs

Good epigraphs may attract more readers. Sometimes it is necessary. Usually epigraphs are interesting but not intriguing. To pick up an epigraph is some kind of nearly mathematical problem: it ...
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### Mathematical writing : using an “out-of-date” notation

When I wrote my master's thesis, a professor who read it said that I should not use the phrase "A function of class $k$." but instead "A function of class $C^k$". I am not an expert about mathematical ...
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### When to postpone a proof?

One possible practice in writing mathematics is to prove every theorem and lemma right after stating it. A long, technical proof — and sometimes even a short one — can interrupt the flow ...
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### How to write an abstract for a math paper? [closed]

How would you go about writing an abstract for a Math paper? I know that an abstract is supposed to "advertise" the paper. However, I do not really know how to get started. Could someone tell me how ...
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### Style of mathematical writing vs. too many lemmas

I work in PDEs. I have now written 3 papers. I find my style is of the form: introduction, statement of results, paragraphs to introduce something, lemma, more text, lemma, more text, lemma, more text,...
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### When is it appropriate to name something a 'fundamental lemma'? [closed]

The term 'fundamental lemma' refers to many results in mathematics. I don't know too many results referred to by that name, but I am familiar with, for example, the 'fundamental lemma of sieve theory' ...
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### Parodies of abstruse mathematical writing

Perhaps under the influence of a recent question on perverse sheaves, in conjunction with the impending $\pi$-day (3/14/15 at 9:26:53), I recalled a long-ago parody of abstruse mathematical language ...
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### Different styles of writing/reading articles

Recently, I discovered a rather unexpected thing. We are writing an article in collaboration and we permanently have some discussions about how to write, in which order, how to organize material etc. ...
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### How to refer to plural of mathematical symbols - with or without an apostrophe [closed]

Which one is correct, $x_i$s or $x_i$'s? Example sentence: The $x_i$s form a sequence. The $x_i$'s form a sequence.
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### Collaboration or acknowledgment?

This post is a sequel of: When should a supervisor be a co-author? This time the topic is about the interaction between two professional mathematicians (in particular junior-senior, but not ...
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### How were formulas / images added to books in post-printing-press / pre-digital times?

I have seen that Euclid's Elements was written 300 BC and first set in type in 1482. Are there scans of that old versions available? How were formulas / images added to the books created with ...
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### Proof or citation?

I'm writing an article. I suppose that I'll submit it to a more or less decent journal (in English). I have doubts about the following: I have a lemma (with quite a trivial proof). I don't want to ...
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### Good ways to organize old personal mathematical resources

I am wondering how the other Mathematicians organize their old mathematical resources, like calculation drafts, class and seminar notes etc. These old resources may be related to a wide range of ...
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### Should a theorem be numbered by where it is first stated or where it is proven?

Suppose I am writing a paper in which an important lemma has a proof which is either long and unenlightening or requires additional background of the reader (or both). Thus, to avoid disrupting the ...
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### Can I use both of setbuilder notations in one article?

I am sorry if this question is not for mathoverflow. I asked the same question in tex stackexchange and got an answer that this question is out of topic. If it's the same here, please let me know. ...
832 views

### Is there an editors checklist for mathematics?

I always have trouble with editing math papers for publication. I know there are plenty of checklists for English exposition but is there one for math specific exposition errors?
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### Formal writing: numbers under 10

I've been tasked with proofreading an Engineering/Mathematics thesis paper. I was always told that numbers under 10 should be spelled out (one, two, three, ...) but I was wondering if this rule holds ...
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### About writing of mathematical papers [closed]

Is not it better to use a mathematical language for writing mathematical papers. For example, use the logic of mathematical symbols more tnan additional comment. Is it feasible?
1k views

### Should science authors discourage / boycott the recent push for author IDs [closed]

In recent years, several organizations (publishers, arXiv, universities) started pushing for systems of a reliable author identification, gaining considerable traction with the recent launch of ORCID. ...
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### the use of parentheses to mean “I won't tell you this again”

A reader of one of my drafts found fault with my use of parentheses; I put the word "bounded" in parentheses in a statement of a certain theorem, and he replied "But the statement isn't true if the ...
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### When a name is used for two different notions!

What would you do if you see a notion which you used to work with has two names and the same name you use for this notion is used for another notion too. For example, after the work of J.B. Bost, A. ...
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### Capitalization of named theorems [closed]

I would like to extend a previous question on the capitalization of theorem names . This time, it's not about numbered theorems like "Lemma 1.1", but about theorems that carry a name. Question: ...
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### How to balance writing professionally and being able to have a conversation with your reader?

Background. I am someone at the very very beginning stages of my career as a mathematician, and am, for example, almost ready to (re)submit my first paper. I have already read a lot of essays on how ...
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### Typographically separating logical argument from explanation and example [closed]

I am currently writing a master's dissertation. In this dissertation I have chosen to typographically separate logical argument, (Theorems, Proofs, and Definitions) from aids to understanding (...
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Do you know readers of your papers ? Or - is it true that if paper is not groundbreaking no one (except very few people, working very closely and hence known for you) will read it ? If it is so - ...
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### Graph of dependencies from a Latex file [closed]

This question has been "manually migrated" to TeX-SX: http://tex.stackexchange.com/q/40200/86 Apologies if the question is not very appropiate for Mathoverflow. It seems to me more appropiate here ...
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### How to write popular mathematics well?

Recently, some classmates and I were lamenting the fact that our classmates in other disciplines had almost no conception of what we did, despite the large mathematics population at Waterloo. Instead ...