MathJax Support has been enabled for RPG.se
MathJax support has been added to RPG.se. We should probably write up a guide on Meta for using it, but in the short version is that you can use
\$ to format the
… part using LaTeX's mathematics markup. In the meantime there is this MathJax Guide as a reference.
The nature of tabletops overlaps a lot with statistics to the point where being able to simply write minor mathematical expressions would be beneficial to conveying simple mathematical explanations. For example, Math.SE has a plugin that allows for the direct in-line use of LaTeX math formatting within answer and comment texts, which they use to much success.
Here we see a very beefy post about determining if a die is fair. This kind of post, though mathematically heavy, could be of importance to a vast portion of the RPG.SE audience. The construction of simple superscript and subscripts in LaTeX require only ^ and _. Where in RPG.SE currently, there is a need to apply html tags and italic markup to make expressions appear in math format proper, and even then it's difficult to get right.
Now, those are the merits. Demerits would include the potential for the posts which contain the LaTeX equation bounding symbols (which are $ and $$) may end up wonkily applying math format to posts that did not intend it.
I want to know how much a [item] costs in [system].
Oh, it costs $100, but you can buy one during recessions for $50.
In the above response, the LaTeX plugin will turn the section "100, but you can buy one during recessions for" into math format and treat anything within it as LaTeX markup.
I believe that such occurrences are rare, but I don't have a real basis for how often two dollar signs appear on the same line in answers or comments. Someone please feel free to prove me wrong.
One can use other delimiters for in-line math mode, and SE already supports that. One site (economics?) already uses
$...$for that reason. – Davide Cervone 2 hours ago
Another demerit is that not many users of RPG.SE may be familiar with LaTeX already and will need to learn it to use it. This demerit is less of an issue as LaTeX is a very common markup with numerous resources available throughout the net. Not only that, but the mathematically-inclined users who want to use it, will most likely know LaTeX from their background.
Still, the introduction of LaTeX to the community where it would be used but currently isn't can't be expected to be enforced. If unknowledgeable users continue to mark-up math as 1 / (6^4) for the probability of getting four sixes on 4d6, would users be expected to edit the posts to wrap the math expressions in LaTeX?
I believe that it would be a nice plugin to add to the community for when it's needed, and can't argue for the lack of it being a pervasive problem. Nevertheless, I'd like to open up the discussion about whether or not the community wants the plugin and how it should be handled if added.
This is my first time writing a serious meta post, if I'm remembering correctly, so bear with me.