Question: How do I best treat "delta" in Maple?

February 09 2014 Mac Dude 535

In physics as in math, we often use delta to indicate a (small but finite) variation in a parameter (e.g. delta x). Sometimes Delta (capital delta) is used for a larger variation, and there are even constructs like delta Delta x (a small variation of a larger variation in x). (Don't laugh or frown, this is being done & makes sense in certain situations.)

How do I write this best in Maple, esp. when I use 2-d math and am working on a (live-) script that may be handed out to others incl. students,? I.e. the appearance matters. Just writing delta x is interpreted (in 2-d input) as delta*x which is not what is meant (and leads to funny effects after the first simplify). If I write deltax (one word) then delta does not typeset in its proper greek form, which becomes an issue if you have many of these. I can write delta(x) and that often works (as long as you don't try to differentiate by x), but the typeset equation does not look right either (delta is not a function of x).

Is there a god way of doing this, or am I hitting a wall here?


Mac Dude


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