These days, the voting phase of the Matheplanet Member Award ended. Among the 15 categories, there’s an award for the best LaTeX advisor.
I’m happy to read that our fellow Matheplanet members voted to present me with the award. Thank you very much! It means much to me, because it’s the first Internet forum I joined. This was in 2005, ten years ago. At that time I used LaTeX a lot for math. Even student homework makes fun when it’s written and presented like in a science publication. As reading source code and programming is a lot easier than math I mostly wrote answers in the LaTeX forum. Another reason is, that I don’t do other student’s math homework, which seems to be asked sometimes, but LaTeX is a working tool where I can freely help. Because it’s not homework or an assigned task but a great tool for maths which we gladly support.
The annual member’s award is the feedback from users for user’s contributions and a nice event every year. There’s no voting for posts, in contrast to Stack Exchange sites where each single post has a “like” button. However, they have a concept similar to the SE badges. In 2005, the Matheplanet introduced colored sticks called “Stäbchen” which stand for certain contributions. They are collected in the user’s profile. This was three years before SE aka StackOverflow was founded. My profile can be looked at as a sample.
The Matheplanet still looks similar like at its beginning, being a classical web forum. Today, it has LaTeX support and is even capable of compiling TikZ snippets. It became popular to embed TikZ drawings directly within forum posts, which is really nice. I noticed cis doing it a lot. Before supporting LaTeX, the forum provided its own formula editor. Its syntax is quite intuitive, which is very good for easy and quick posting, but students and mathematicians are mostly already used to LaTeX, so direct LaTeX support is nice to have.