At 09:23 +0200 2001/05/21, Thierry Bouche wrote: >Honestly, when i read maths with a \varphi next to a \phi, i >never know whether it's keying error or semantic subtility. But these papers, do they not have a definition somewhere telling what mathematical quantities they denote? I think it would be difficult to have any of those rather different variations side by side in a math paper and they denote the same mathematical quantity. > The >problem being that any available glyph in a standard font set will be >used by mathematicians... On the other hand, pi and varpi should >cohabit, but maybe with a more semantic name (pi/doricpi?). This is the key to the problem: How mathematicians use it. When I read a math paper, I try to figure out what mathematical quantities the different glyphs represent and then I focus on those mathematical quantities when I read the paper, and not the glyphs themselves. There are some corny practises out the for sure, and sometimes it can be difficult to read a style that one is not used to: But I have never heard a mathematician wanting to impose restrictions in order to provide better styles: Often the style is dictated by the problem of expressing the mathematical structure, so it would be unfortunate to have to cope with restrictions that may conflict with that directive. By contrast, in computer language programming, it is quite common trying to impose such restrictions. But that would not work in math. > Making it hard for authors to use in a same paper >two versions of epsilon or phi is a good thing for the >readers. Allowing them to choose which shape they prefer is no >problem, especially if the publisher can override this with his >styles. So I totally disagree here: Because of what you said yourself, the manner in which mathematicians may use these glyphs, this would not be prudent. Hans Aberg