3

I'm in a situation where I have a concept in my document that is traditionally represented using the question mark ?.

However, for visual clarity, I would like to differentiate between the ordinary punctuation ?, and my "special" use of it as a symbol.

I have tried mathbb, mathcal, and most of the other typical math font modes, but all of them seem to render ? in an identical way (at least under the default options of the acmart class).

Is there some way that I can get a fancy ? symbol? Bold, italic, black board, calligraphy, I'm open to different options. The inverted question mark is not an option, as it already carries meaning in my particular field.

EDIT:

For reference, if I do this:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}
\usepackage{amssymb}
\begin{document}
$\mathsf{?} ? \mathbf{?} \mathit{?} \mathbb{?} \mathcal{?}$
\end{document}

It renders as this: enter image description here i.e. there is no difference between the symbols.

The font used is Libertine, specifically the Libertine option of newtxmath, maybe this is part of the problem?

  • This is a bit vague. – egreg Dec 3 '18 at 22:39
  • @DavidCarlisle Yes, this is in math. I've updated to question to clarify that mathbf and mathit seem to do nothing. – jmite Dec 3 '18 at 22:43
  • @DavidCarlisle: exact same results on overleaf with a minimal complete document (question updated to include self-contained example) – jmite Dec 3 '18 at 22:52
  • @jmite yes well my initial comment was not as accurate as it could have been:-) – David Carlisle Dec 3 '18 at 22:55
6

You can use the text fonts or images

enter image description here

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{graphicx}

\begin{document}

$?\,\textbf{?}\,\textit{?}\,\textsf{?}\,\includegraphics[height=.7em]{q}$

\end{document}
  • 1
    @jmite do you want to buy that original mspaint artwork brushstroke? :-) – David Carlisle Dec 3 '18 at 23:14
6

The behavior of the character ? in math is defined by

\DeclareMathSymbol{?}{\mathclose}{operators}{"3F}

so it isn't affected by math alphabet changing commands such as \mathsf. You can define

\DeclareMathSymbol{\qm}{\mathalpha}{operators}{"3F}

Example:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath} % not really used here

\DeclareMathSymbol{\qm}{\mathalpha}{operators}{"3F}
\DeclareMathAlphabet{\mathbbold}{U}{bbold}{m}{n}

\begin{document}

\[
\qm\quad\mathrm{\qm}\quad
\mathit{\qm}\quad\mathsf{\qm}\quad
\mathtt{\qm}\quad\mathbbold{\qm}
\]

\end{document}

enter image description here

A different approach: find a font that has the glyph that suits your need and do something like

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\newcommand{\qm}{\text{\usefont{OT1}{iwona}{m}{n}?}}

\begin{document}

\[
\qm
\]

\end{document}

enter image description here

Differently from using \textbf or \textit, both approaches will not be affected by the font current at the time math mode was entered. For instance, in a theorem statement, typically using italics, $\textbf{?}$ would be typeset in boldface italic.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.