As a web developer/designer I know many ways to actually use font symbols (not just things like Wingdings, but actual mathematical symbols in the fonts themselves. They are used by mathematicians AND programmers to use as shorthand to refer to certain things. It’s quicker and sometimes easier to use the symbol to communicate your point. But, it requires the OTHER person know what the symbol represents.
For example, there is the symbol for “not equal to” (≠ – a mathematical symbol). In point of fact, there are LOTS of HTML Entities you can use to create the shorthand, IF you have a place (like this WordPress content management system) that allows you to add in HTML along with your text.
But, to be able to use it in written social interaction, there has to be a movement – such as the combination of a semi-colon and a end parens becoming a winking smile.
There are so many ways I can see to use them:
- Body Acceptance ≠ Encouraging unhealthy behavior (does not equal)
- Encouraging responsible behavior !≠ Slut-shaming (does not ALWAYS equal)
- Non-monogamy ≠ Cheating (does not equal)
Can you think of other ways to use mathematical symbols in written communication?