You can use Word 2007 features to generate very nice looking mathematical notation. This feature is, for all practical purposes, completely undocumented by Microsoft. However, some information has been published by Microsoft employees and others on the web. This post is meant to serve as a convenient directory of that information. (This post will be updated as I learn more about equations in Word 2007.)
- To enter equation mode: Insert|Equation or Alt+= shortcut. Note that the Insert ribbon doesn’t have the Equation item when in Blog mode. Why not? (Question: How do I get it to appear in Blog mode?)
- Dataninja: Undocumented Word 2007 Equation Shortcuts—John Gardner created this very nice reference card with some useful equation formatted tips.
- Word Team Blog: Equations in 2007—an introductory post, with links to two screenshot-videos on how to use linear method. Unfortunately – she doesn’t explain, while she is typing, how to enter equation mode or how use the keyboard to move the cursor from one insertion field to the next. (This is currently the only post on the Word Team blog with the tag “equations”.)
- Word 2007 Math Autocorrect Symbols—I cut&pasted this from the Word 2007 Help—it is more easily used in this format.
- TechRepublic: Microsoft Office Word 2007 Inside and Out sample chapter on Building Blocks—TechRepublic offers this sample chapter of Microsoft Office Word 2007 Inside and Out—the chapter is all about Building Blocks, which is what the equations gallery is made of. It explains a bit about Math Autocorrect mode, linear equation entry, and how to add your own equations to the gallery. This chapter is pretty good—the book might be worth getting.
- Word Team Blog: Equation Numbering—a post on how to number the equations in your document. There is a video here too. (This is currently the only post on the Word Team blog with the tag “equations video”.)
- Murray Sargent: Math in Office: Using Math Italic and Bold in Word 2007—How using the ribbon’s italic and bold formatting buttons provides the proper math italic and bold characters for variables.
- UTN 28: Unicode Nearly Plain-Text Encoding of Mathematics—this document, an Unicode consortium Technical Note written by the Microsoft developer who implemented the feature, is a complete description of the linear entry method.
- Murray Sargent: Math Selection—a brief note on how selection works inside an equation, and the related post Murray Sargent: Using Left/Right Arrow Keys in Mathematical Text on how the insertion points works inside an equation.
- Murray Sargent: Breaking Equations Into Multiple Lines—A nice description of how to break equations onto multiple lines, and also how to align multiple equations on a specific character.
- David Carlisle: XHTML and MathML from Office 2007—David Carlisle provides instructions and an XSL stylesheet so you can take the HTML output of Word 2007 and run it through his process to get an XHTML document that has the math equations in MathML format (normally Word 2007 saves equations in “ECMA Math” format, OMML—apparently a Microsoft invention). Note that Word allows you to cut/paste MathML to/from the Clipboard (so you get get equations into or out of Mathematica, for example).
- Murray Sargent: User Spaces in Math Zones—On typing spaces into equations: Just don’t do it!
Interesting, but not as practical:
- Murray Sargent: When Formula Autobuildup Occurs—Technical description of parsing for formula autobuildup
- Murray Sargent: High-Quality Editing and Display of Mathematical Text in Office 2007—This post describes some of the technical background to the mathematical typesetting in Office 2007. It also has a description of the neat Alt-x hex-to-Unicode conversion feature (if you like memorizing the Unicode code points of various mathematical symbols). It also points to this presentation: Math Editing and Display in Office 2007 (Murray Sargent) which summarizes the points in the post.
General places to look for information: