# LaTeX mathematics cheat sheet

LaTeX is the de facto standard typesetting system for scientific writing. A lot of the nice looking equations you see in books and all around the web are written using LaTeX commands. Knowing a few of the mathematics commands is not only helpful if you want to write a book or an article (or do some extreme stuff), but can come in handy in a lot of places, as many systems support LaTeX. You can use LaTeX in MathJax to display expressions on the web (like here), you can make yourself good looking mathematics flashcards in Anki, you can even nerd out and send formulas built with LaTeX commands to your friends via an iMessage app. Also, Apple’s latest Pages release now supports LaTeX equations.

Reasons enough to get familiar with the standard commands!

While a lot of commands can be written out in plain (e.g. 1+1=2), there are other frequently used commands you will need to look up or memorise.

I plan to update this post continuously as I find myself looking for a common symbol I haven’t listed yet. Feel free to drop me an email or comment when you land here and don’t find the answer to a frequently used symbol.

Here is the cheat sheet (naturally incomplete):

## Fractions

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\frac | Build a fraction like so: \frac{1}{2} | $$\frac{1}{2}$$ |

\frac{\frac{}}{} | You can nest fractions: \frac{\frac{1}{2}}{2} | $$\frac{\frac{1}{2}}{2}$$ |

## Greek letters

(capitalize by capitalizing the command)

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\alpha | alpha | $$\alpha$$ |

\beta | beta | $$\beta$$ |

\gamma | gamma | $$\gamma$$ |

\delta | delta | $$\delta$$ |

\epsilon | epsilon | $$\epsilon$$ |

\zeta | zeta | $$\zeta$$ |

\eta | eta | $$\eta$$ |

\theta | theta | $$\theta$$ |

\iota | iota | $$\iota$$ |

\kappa | kappa | $$\kappa$$ |

\lambda | lambda | $$\lambda$$ |

\mu | mu | $$\mu$$ |

\nu | nu | $$\nu$$ |

\xi | xi | $$\xi$$ |

o | omicron | $$o$$ |

\pi | pi | $$\pi$$ |

\rho | rho | $$\rho$$ |

\sigma | sigma | $$\sigma$$ |

\tau | tau | $$\tau$$ |

\upsilon | upsilon | $$\upsilon$$ |

\phi | phi | $$\phi$$ |

\chi | chi | $$\chi$$ |

\psi | psi | $$\psi$$ |

\omega | omega | $$\omega$$ |

## Logic

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\forall | For all | $$\forall$$ |

\exists | Exists | $$\exists$$ |

\lor | Or | $$\lor$$ |

\land | And | $$\land$$ |

\veebar | Xor | $$\veebar$$ |

\neg | Not | $$\neg$$ |

## Operators

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\times | Times | $$\times$$ |

\cdot | Dot | $$\cdot$$ |

\div | Division | $$\div$$ |

\pm | Plus minus | $$\pm$$ |

## Relation

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\neq | Not equal | $$\neq$$ |

\approx | Approximately equal | $$\approx$$ |

\leq | Less than or equal | $$\leq$$ |

\geq | Greater than or equal | $$\geq$$ |

\ll | Much less than | $$\ll$$ |

\gg | Much greater than | $$\gg$$ |

## Sets

(Often you can put an “n” before the command and get the negation)

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\supset | Proper superset | $$\supset$$ |

\supseteq | Superset | $$\supseteq$$ |

\subset | Proper Subset | $$\subset$$ |

\subseteq | Subset | $$\subseteq$$ |

\in | Member | $$\in$$ |

\emptyset | Empty set | $$\emptyset$$ |

\mathbb{R} | Set of real numbers | $$\mathbb{R}$$ |

\cup | Set union (belonging to A OR B) | $$\cup$$ |

\cap | Set intersection (belonging to A AND B) | $$\cap$$ |

## Super-/Subscript (Exponents / Indices)

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

^ | Use ^ for superscript. Example: x^2 | $$x^2$$ |

^{} | Use ^{} for exponents with >1 digit. Example: x^{10} | $$x^{10}$$ |

_ | Use _ for subscript. Example: x_0 | $$x_0$$ |

_{} | Use _{} for subscript with >1 digit. Example: x_{10} | $$x_{10}$$ |

## Others

Command | Description | Output |
---|---|---|

\infty | Infinity | $$\infty$$ |

\partial | Partial | $$\partial$$ |

\hat{} | Estimator | $$\hat{\theta}$$ |

\sqrt[root]{} | Square root | $$\sqrt[3]{4}$$ |

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