ICM Research



Internet Accessible Mathematical Computation


The Internet and the World-Wide Web make many kinds of information and services easily accessible. An article on IEEE spectrum discusses Math on the Internet. The importance of making technical/mathematical communication available on the Internet is underscored by the recent activities at the W3 Consortium and elsewhere to make publishing mathematical materials on the Web easy. MathML is an XML application for markup of mathematical expressions. Both presentation (display layout) and content (computation semantics) markup are supported. Browsers Netscape, Mozilla and Firefox support MathML display when the math fonts needed are installed.

NetSolve, a joint project between the University of Tennessee and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, makes scientific computation packages, mostly numerical in nature, available to users through a variety of interfaces and to Web users through a Java Applet. NetSolve agents register computation resources and refer clients to them based on capabilities of the resources, computational efficiency and fault tolerance considerations. The NetSolve version 1.2 includes Matlab, Mathematica and C client interfaces and an agent.

The IBM digital publishing group has released the experimental Techexplorer, a Web browser plug-in that dynamically formats and displays documents containing scientific and mathematical expressions coded in TeX/LaTeX or MathML. WebEQ from Design Science, Inc. is a suite of Java programs for creating and displaying Web documents containing mathematical formulas. WebEQ 2.3 offers a free math viewer for widely used browsers. MathPlayer also from Design Sciences, Inc. is a MathML plug-in for Internet Explorer. MathZilla support for MathML from Mozilla and Netscape. EzMath is a visual editor that helps convert widely used mathematical notations to markup codes, in either EzMath or MathML, ready for inclusion in Web pages. The W3 Consortium's Amaya Web browser demonstrates a prototype implementation of MathML which allows users to browse and edit Web pages containing complex mathematical expressions. Together with the rest of the Web page, these expressions are manipulated through a WYSIWYG interface.

In addition to viewing mathematical formulas on a Web page, progress is being made to make mathematical computing also easily accessible on the Internet. The mathematical results obtained from one computation service ought to be usable by another. Accessing a math-oriented computing service should be as simple as entering a command, retrieving a Web page, or sending email. Internet accessibility can make research, experimental, parallel/super computing, one-of-a-kind, demonstration, or commercial software systems that deal with mathematics in any technical discipline easily reachable on a global basis.

What's needed is flexible integration of heterogeneous mathematical systems on a distributed basis, involving data integration, control integration, and user interface integration.

IAMC Efforts and Systems

Here is a growing list of projects and systems related to making mathematics available/accessible on the Internet:


IAMC Related Articles, Conferences, and Activities

IAMC Live Demos

Please let us know if you have a demo you wish listed here.


The SymbolicNet Web site maintained by ICM is a good source of information for symbolic computation. The site offers some interesting live demos for various kinds of mathematical computations.

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The IAMC project has been supported by the National Science Foundation