LaTeX/MathJax display tags no longer working

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As this is a technical issue, I am beginning with some background (for those who might stumble upon this). The actual question is in bold below.

For years, Canvas has allowed, first by invoking MathJax manually by adding the requisite <math> </math> tags, but now by default, users to essentially use LaTeX code in their pages.  This is often used to render mathematical equations and other notations.

LaTeX code comes in two versions: inline and display.

Inline LaTeX is processed and displayed inline. So if you want to say, "The derivative of x^2 is 2x", you would use inline LaTeX. This is done in LaTeX itself using $s. So you would have $x^{2}$ to display x^2. Since $s mean something specific in the HTML world, MathJax (which is what allows the LaTeX code to be rendered when included in an HTML document) has users use \( \). So we would instead write \(x^{2}\). 

Display LaTeX is processed and displayed on its own line, using a larger font and having a few other typographical modifications. In LaTeX, you use double-dollar-signs: $$LaTeX code$$. In MathJax, you can use either this syntax, OR \[ \]. That is, you can do: \[LaTeX code\] to invoke display mode.

The problem is that the \[ \] method no longer works in Canvas (Indiana University installation) to trigger LaTeX display mode. Is there a reason this was done? The \[ \] character groupings are not read as escape characters to trigger special behavior, so they (and everything inside of them) are treated as just plain text. This problem occurs on various PC/Mac/Android browsers.

Bizarre note: At least as of yesterday, these tags WERE being parsed correctly by the Canvas Teacher app. (Perhaps it has its own methods for rendering, and it has not been updated yet.)

Moving forward, and at least for right now, I can make pages using the $$ syntax. However, it would not be practical to go back and change hundreds of pages to use this, and so this breaks (at least part of) the mathematical content of many course pages, not just for me, but for many of my colleagues as well. Assuming this was unintended, I must implore that it be reversed as soon as possible.

(My colleagues and I have contacted our school's teaching technology department, who is our liaison with Canvas. They have sent this to Canvas, but the initial response seemed to indicate that they might not have understood what the exact issue was.)

To show this in action, I made a minimal example. What follows is a sequence of three images of this page. The first is the page as it renders in a browser. The second is the edit window. The third is the HTML editor.







1 Solution

Hi all, the change has been reverted. Please let me know if you continue to experience any issues, but all should be working as it was previously. 

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