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ACTION: For consideration by WG2

By Roozbeh Pournader, Adil Allawi and Deborah Anderson (script Encoding Initiative


This proposal is a revision of N3085‐1, which was submitted to WG2 by Azzeddine Lazrek in 2006. The repertoire only includes characters for which evidence has been provided in N3085‐1 (and/or in earlier documents1). The MathML WG would very much like to see progress on this proposal since the Arabic math alphabetic are referred to in the MathML 3.0 specification due to be published this summer. Background Arabic mathematical expressions use special symbols and usually flow from right to left. Most of these symbols had been adopted through official international conventions such as The Amman’s 1987 convention (see figure 2, page 21 in N3085‐1). Arabic mathematical alphabetic symbols constitute a widely used version of the Arabic alphabet, used over many centuries and in many contexts, e.g., in manuscripts, books on epigraphy, manuals, and traditional print editions. This way of writing expressions corresponds to the standards and conventions adopted in languages using Arabic alphabet‐based scripts, such as Arabic or Persian. The majority of mathematics handbooks used in the Middle East, Libya, Algeria, etc. are typeset according to these conventions. In some cases, both Latin and Arabic types of presentations of mathematics may be required in the same text. Therefore, the addition of those characters is necessary for the correct and accurate representation of ancient and current Arabic mathematical expressions. Style Variations in Math In mathematics, style variations are very important semantically. Mathematical alphabetic 1 Earlier versions of the Arabic Mathematical Alphabetic Symbols proposal are listed and posted at

Year: 2010
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