Turns 10! - Susam Pal

submited by
Style Pass
2022-09-23 09:30:16

On this day, ten years ago, was released on the world wide web. is a web-based mathematics pastebin service that is used for sharing snippets of mathematical text with others. Visit to see what it looks like and use it. The source code is available at

Today, is the oldest mathematics pastebin that is still online and serving its community of users. It isn't the first mathematics pastebin though. It's the second.

The first pastebin was written by Mark A. Stratman and hosted at the domain until 2020. It was very popular in the #math and #physics channels on IRC networks between 2005 and 2013. It did not have live preview but it used an actual LaTeX system for rendering mathematical formulas into images, so the output was of pretty good quality. It served IRC users very well for sharing problems and solutions quickly with each other on IRC channels. Since late-2014, Mark's website began intermittently displaying a notice that the website is shutting down. The notice replaced the actual pastebin on some days, so users were forced to look for alternatives. was already available on the web and popular among IRC users by then, so it turned out to be a good alternative. Mark's website disappeared sometime in late-2020.

Another alternative to the first mathematics pastebin was Huy Nguyen's It was released on the web in September 2013. I believe it was the third pastebin to be released on the web. In fact, it was a bit more than a pastebin. It allowed users to sign up for an account and save their notes in their account. It had some nifty widgets to click and automatically insert some common LaTeX symbols instead of typing them out manually. It had its own community of users. However, it suffered from serious spamming problems. Searching for "" on Twitter shows how the service was being exploited by spammers to share illicit content and links several times every single day between December 2016 and February 2018. Despite the spam problems, it continued to serve its genuine users for several years. Finally, the website disappeared in 2021 and has not returned since then.

Leave a Comment