Summary:

The purpose of this project is to make it easy to produce mathematical textbooks from pre-existing, freely available material.

PlanetMath is a free/open mathematics community that uses the same license as Wikipedia. It is best known for its encyclopedia, and cutting edge in-browser interaction and rendering of mathematics content. In recent years, PlanetMath’s software system has been entirely rebuilt, with a new focus on free/open problem sets, course outlines, and textbooks. We plan to reuse existing material from PlanetMath, Wikipedia, and math.stackexchange.com, along with other free/open and public domain sources, to expand our collection of mathematical learning materials. PlanetMath’s special-purpose software make it an ideal place to assemble content — and publish “downstream”, e.g. to Wikibooks. This kind of content exchange has a precedent in the earlier PlanetMath Exchange, which brought hundreds of articles from PlanetMath to Wikipedia. If we can do something similar with books, it will be a big step forward for Open Educational Resources, and the Wikimedia movement.

An IEG grant would support the technical work that will make this possible.

]]>The servers must not be located in the U.S. (or fellow U.K., or China, or Russia etc.).

Even more general: The service must be run as independent from influence and supervision of the big brother organizations like NSA as possible.

Else, we would face soon the situation that the essence of mathematical heritage is at the free disposal of a bureaucracy that will cut off the world from the core of research if they consider it useful for the “sake of homeland security” (which may be already the case if some cryptographic results are published which they think may harm their surveillance infrastructure).

Given their genuine interest in math research, they may even force the WDML to design interfaces which install spy software to every mathematician, just to be sure about all ongoing research. (Ok, maybe they just spy foreign mathematicians this way, and of course everything is under democratic control since the house and the court gave them carte blanche. And maybe the American Mathematical Society is happy about this because this could lead to even more NSA grants.)

Dear fellows, many of the ideas above about social network features etc. sound very nice and comfortable, but please dont’t forget about the reality:

This is a world where mathematical knowledge means power. Not for the mathematician who is merely the armourer who can easily be killed by a sword forged by himself, but for the big players out there who are able and willing to use power without any qualms. This is not science fiction, we know that they did it, they do it now and they will continue on large scale.

So don’t even think about creating such unique information pools of core science if you have no idea how to protect this. To my knowledge, this is beyond today’s technical options. But we should at least try. The first requirement would be to have the servers and development located at several mirrored places outside U.S.-U.K./China/Russia. Let us do the development and maintenance without any organization which has ties to agencies like NSA. Let us use mandatory encryption.

Unfortunately, it may quickly turn out that we have to do this without Sloane funds.

]]>Fulltext are math OCRed, formulae normalized and stored in MathML and indexed. The technology behind (MIaS, Math Indexer and Searcher, https://mir.fi.muni.cz/mias/) has been tested on arXiv papers with 3 billions of formulae indexed. ]]>

A small group of people at Wolfram|Alpha has over the last year worked on some exploratory aspect of a digital math library.

The goal was to make the main results of a sample set of papers from the continued fraction literature easily searchable and return concise results.

For more details, see our recent blog:

http://blog.wolframalpha.com/2013/05/16/computational-knowledge-of-continued-fractions/

]]>http://coolwanglu.github.io/pdf2htmlEX/

https://github.com/coolwanglu/pdf2htmlEX/blob/master/README.md ]]>