Beyond Syntax

Looking beyond syntactical meaning

Taking Math Notes on Mac OS X

I'll begin with a story. Last week I was taking notes in my mathematics class when the graphite in my mechanical pencil broke. No big deal. Well, not quite, it turns out that the pencil had no more graphite left. So I fall back to my emergency pen with plans to replenish my graphite supply once I get home.

Naturally I forget.

So today when I went to class I decided to bring my computer along (so I could finish modifying my MSCS). Once class begins I reach into my pocket to grab my pencil and realize that I never filled it up. So I think to myself: Should I take notes with my pen or try to go for it with the computer. Being a computer scientist I choose the computer.

The professor begins writing on the chalkboard. \lambda p_0 =\mu
p_1. Great. Doesn't that just flow off the fingers. I frantically start trying the various Alt/Alt+Shift key strokes OS X features. No lambda. Alright, maybe someone has already figured this out for me. Nope. The common suggestions are OmniOutliner and NoteTaker. Neither of which flow as naturally as I wanted. Luckily for me I know LaTeX, so I ended up using writing the notes as close to LaTeX style as I could get. I ended up doing pretty well, but I was hoping for something a little easier had been developed. So for Wednesday, I'll probably make myself some shorter commands to allow for a more natural flow when I'm typing my notes.

Anyone know of a decent WYSIWYG program for writing complex mathematical equations on the fly for OS X? I'm alright using LaTeX syntax, I would just like to be able to see the output quickly and on-the-fly.