I am typing optimization problems in latex. Half of the variables are vectors. First I used bold to mention vectors, but it looked ugly. Now I am using $\mathbbmss{p}$ but I am not sure if this looks neat

{\mathop{\arg\max}\limits_{\vec{\theta}}}\; && \mathbbmss{p}_k(\theta)\mathbbmss{q}-p_B\mathbbmss{q}_B&\\
  • could you turn your snippet into a complete MWE :)
    – cmhughes
    Mar 27, 2013 at 14:14
  • 1
    What's your actual question though?
    – User 17670
    Mar 27, 2013 at 14:33
  • Is there a commonly accepted notation for such formulations? In som e papers I saw that authors use bold, some use \vec{}, I know simple answer is do whatever you want, but I appreciate comments f more experience math people.
    – sosruko
    Mar 27, 2013 at 15:05
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    This is highly subjective but I usually 1) use \vec (so it's easier to change the appearance of vectors should it be necessary) and 2) load isomath and \let\vec\vectorsym, because it usually works out (and arrows are ugly).
    – You
    Mar 27, 2013 at 15:46

1 Answer 1


I read this question as a beg for an evaluation of the "neatiness" of the fonts of the package bbm when used for vectors. So it seems to be a style question and style questions are

  • objective / neutral, if style are standardized. Then you shouldn't post this question here but to whoever set up this standard of using bbms fonts.
  • subjectiv / personal, if not:

No, I don't find them neat at all. They differ so much from the normal math characters, that they distract a lot. They also seem artificial and kind of ugly. If you can, use a unicode-enabled engine such xetex or luatex, a unicode-math-enabled font such as Asana Math, TG Pagella Math or XITS Math, and the math alphabets provided by these fonts. Then, all the characters are of one style.

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