# RE: Complexity Math in PDF and ASCII Notation (Fluff, Long)

*From*: "Peter Torpey" <ptorpey@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>*To*: <programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>*Date*: Tue, 11 Sep 2007 08:13:24 -0400

You asked about Mathematica. Well, I am a blind physicist and have needed to do complex symbolic math. I must say, I've never figured out a good way of dealing with the PDF type of documents you wish to read, but if you're doing your own math, equations, etc., I found mathematica almost impossible to use with Jaws. The program which I found to be very accessible (and used all of the time) is Maple (www.maplesoft.com). Although the Java interface they are pushing into their new releases is somewhat clumsy with Jaws, the Classic interface is very accessible with Jaws. I have found this program very useful. Maple is rather a costly program (> $1,000, although there may be a less expensive version for students). An open source math program which you can obtain is macsyma. This runs fairly well with Jaws (although I haven't played around with it much). I found this on sourceforge.net. One other neat little program for which I developed scripts and had the original developer tweak a bit to work well with Jaws is called QD Accessible. This little program runs on the PacMate and does all sorts of symbolic math, derivatives, solving symbolic equations, as well as doing numerical math. I placed the program, scripts, and some documentation I wrote on the Pacmate Gear web site so that folks could download it if they needed it. I hope this helps. -- Pete -----Original Message----- From: programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Veli-Pekka Tätilä Sent: Monday, September 10, 2007 6:01 PM To: programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx Subject: Complexity Math in PDF and ASCII Notation (Fluff, Long) Hi list, I'm now on a course that's about algorithms, data structures and temporal complexity, for the most part. lite math, intuition and analysis of code rather than any actual programming tasks, per se. ONce again, I've hit the usual snag of notation, so here are some questions about math: The slides are PDf files produced by Distiller from PowerPpoint Slides, arrgh. In them the math is seriously whacky. On exporting to plain text using Acrobat or Xpdf, both left out various critical math signs such as greater than or is in set. Using Acrobat Reader 8 and Dolphin Supernova 8 beta the situation is not much better. There are symbols that look like set theory symbols but it appears their actual code points don't match, in stead Sn reads something like pounds, for instance, even though I know for certain that is not what the symbol on screen looks like. Is there any accessible way to deal with these PDfs? Has anyone had similar experiences and could share workarounds? This is in Finnish, and the math is near the end, but here is a sample document: http://www.tol.oulu.fi/kurssit/811386A/Luennot/Alg_Johdanto_kalvot.pdf The book we use is Introduction to ALgorithms, the 2001 edition. I'm sure I'll be able to get the originals for the lecture notes but they are power point, so might not be that good to begin with. Even if LaTEX was used, as in another math oriented computing course I tried, I had a hard time with that, too. Mostly due to the math itself, but one still has to know the notation, too and I have never studied LaTEX, although would like to mainly for writing articles and maintainging references with ease, but hey, that's OT. Nested parens and the greek letters make things all the more harder, though, as far as symbols go. Doable, sure, but not nice and or easy, even if I was a math whiz, and I assure you I am not. I genuinely like programming but I have never truely gotten into higher math, higher than say logarithms or simple derivatives. I kinda like math and have a deep appreciation for some of the results and people I know who know it well, but somehow feel I have a hard time coping with very abstract definitions. Part of that is just me, part is practice and one important portion of that is notation, thus my questions. I still wish I knew enough to be able to do audio DSP some day since I'm an analog synth buff, too. But the filter math there is way beyond me and again OT. Sorry for these tangents, I'm typing this late at night and don't feel like cutting, <smile>. Anyway, back to notation, my other question is, how do you people deal with the set theory symbols, logic and other basic math signs? So far. as in a previous course on logic, I've used operators from programming languages and the HTMl 4.0 entity names with relative success. Are there better textual notations and on-line references for picking them up? What does Mathematica use? How is Math ML like? I wish semi seriously that there would be a math notation that's as speech friendly as SQl or Ruby is compared to obfuscated C and Perl JAPHs with speech, to draw bad programming analogies, <grin>. I'm still a fan of Ruby, SQL, and APple script on syntax grounds alone which is quite telling. I know this doesn't matter to everyone that much but when ever I can speech read code that sounds like Good English, I think, now this is easy to follow, and elegant, to. -- With kind regards Veli-Pekka Tätilä (vtatila@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx) Accessibility, game music, synthesizers and programming: http://www.student.oulu.fi/~vtatila __________ View the list's information and change your settings at http://www.freelists.org/list/programmingblind -- No virus found in this incoming message. Checked by AVG Free Edition. Version: 7.5.485 / Virus Database: 269.13.13/998 - Release Date: 9/10/2007 8:48 AM __________ View the list's information and change your settings at http://www.freelists.org/list/programmingblind

**Follow-Ups**:**Re: Complexity Math in PDF and ASCII Notation (Fluff, Long)***From:*Chris Hallsworth

**Re: Math in Word, Maple Notation (Was: Complexity Math in PDF)***From:*Veli-Pekka Tätilä

**References**:**Complexity Math in PDF and ASCII Notation (Fluff, Long)***From:*Veli-Pekka Tätilä

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