Easy Equations in MediaWiki

If you’ve ever set up MediaWiki, you will probably know how difficult it is to get equations (or LaTeX rendering / math tags) working. Under windows, it requires a lot of tweaking, ImageMagick support, a full LaTeX install and in quite a few cases fails to work. While trying to get equation rendering working on my personal (read, private!) wiki, I came across an interesting solution to this problem. Simply put, it is in extension which interprets <tex> tags and then sets the image URL to that of an image generated by a CGI-Script on another page. This means that no LaTeX or ImageMagick support is needed on the localhost.

The full details of how to get this working are documented here. It is very simple to set up, with the only drawback being that you have to use <tex> tags instead of <math> tags.

If you are interested in the script itself, perhaps to use it for something other than a Wiki, you can visit the creator’s site here. If you have a large wiki or other project however, it is recommended that you host the CGI script yourself to reduce the load on the server that provides this free LaTeX equation rendering.

2 Responses

  1. Gabe says:

    I run an engineering website and need MathTex. So I figured out how to install it – with a lot of help from John Forkosh and another DreamHost customer.

    I wrote up MathTex installation instructions for DreamHost here: http://hubpages.com/hub/Installing-MathTex-on-DreamHost

  2. Heya! I just want to tell you that I love your entire writing style and that so I am going to follow this blog frequently from now on ;-) Keep writing!

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