# [tex4ht] Forcing pic math when desired.

Beuthe, Thomas beuthet at aecl.ca
Tue Sep 7 16:58:11 CEST 2010

UNRESTRICTED | ILLIMITÉ

By default, when using htlatex, TeX4ht will try and
render as much math as possible using html.  This also
happens when the AMS align or alignat environments are used.

In general, this behavior is useful since it cuts down on
the number of pictures that have to be produced to render math.

On the other hand, this sometimes produces less than desirable
results.  For example, when simultaneous sub- and superscripts
are used, there is no way of tucking them up against the anchor character.
It can also produce less than desirable spacing when subscripts
are put against characters with long descenders.

It can also cause problems when html has to be mixed with
picture math, because the vertical alignment can be bad.
This phenomenon can occur within a given math environment
or across alignment regions in align and alignat for example.

In cases like this it would be desirable to have a way of
forcing TeX4ht to set the whole equation using picmath but
only a certain equation, not ALL equations.  It would also be
nice to do it in such a way that the fix does not affect
what gets produced when the document is run trough LaTeX

One method of doing this I have come up with it to trick TeX4ht
into producing picture math by enclosing the environment in a
\left. \right. pair. This causes TeX4ht to think that perhaps
something complicated is coming, and forces it to put the whole
thing into picmath mode. However, since enclosing the equation in a
\left. \right. pair is essentially a "do nothing" command, it
will not affect the document when it is typeset in LaTeX.

Thomas

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