The Markdown Editing Help page on Chemistry Stack Exchange (https://chemistry.stackexchange.com/editing-help#latex) includes the following short example for the the use of MathJax:

\Gamma(z) = \int_0^\infty t^{z-1}e^{-t}dt\,.

This example would render as follows:

$$ \Gamma(z) = \int_0^\infty t^{z-1}e^{-t}dt\,. $$

This example is not strictly wrong; however, it contains a few small typographic nonconformities (the positions of the limits of the definite integral; the mathematical constant $\mathrm e$ as well as the $\mathrm d$ in the derivative $\mathrm dt$ shall not be set in italics; there shall be a thin space before the $\mathrm d$, which is not automatically set by MathJax; and the wrong space before the final punctuation mark, which makes the result look like bad kerning).

The correct expression should look like this:

$$ \Gamma(z) = \int\limits_0^\infty t^{z-1}\mathrm e^{-t}\,\mathrm dt. $$

On Chemistry Stack Exchange (in contrast to the communities of some other Stack Exchange sites or the terrible user interface of Stack Exchange itself), we try to encourage our users to use typesetting in accordance with international standards for science and technology.

Therefore, the example included in the Markdown Editing Help page should be changed so that it yields a correct result, for example:

\Gamma(z) = \int\limits_0^\infty t^{z-1}\mathrm e^{-t}\,\mathrm dt.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ While I support the aim of this bug report, I do absolutely not support the example code snippet. I am of the opinion that there is to much ambiguity, especially to new users, when omitting curly braces. Especially since the MathJax developers decided to keep commands like \rm alive, actually only giving us a thin line to some other hellish formatting... $\endgroup$ Feb 23, 2020 at 14:15
  • $\begingroup$ @Martin-マーチン (and Loong and all) - As far as I can tell, the content of the snippet is somewhat unimportant. Is there a different example we could use that wouldn't have this issue? For example: x=\frac{-b \pm \sqrt{b^2-4ac}}{2a} ? $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Apr 13, 2020 at 19:11
  • $\begingroup$ @Catija Yes, that could work. While you're at it, you might also want to change the sentence Chemistry Stack Exchange uses MathJax to render LaTeX. to Chemistry Stack Exchange uses MathJax to render LaTeX syntax.. $\endgroup$ Apr 13, 2020 at 22:54
  • $\begingroup$ And shall the integral sign also be upright? ;-) $\endgroup$ Aug 4, 2022 at 20:38

1 Answer 1


We've updated this to be a simple quadratic formula example.

Screenshot of editing help page section about LaTeX

There were some other small changes we were thinking about making but we held off for the moment. We did add the word "syntax" after "LaTeX" as recommended by Martin in the comments.

  • $\begingroup$ Enthusiastically raised thumbs. $\endgroup$ May 25, 2020 at 22:49

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