# Computational tools for Statistics¶

Today's presentation focuses on the software that we'll use in this class - both for computation and communication.

Specifically, we'll look at

• How to communicate properly in our forum using Markdown
• Python and its libraries for statistical computation
• How to run Python in a notebook environment that can be annotated with (again) Markdown.

## Markup and Markdown¶

Webpages are generally written in HTML, or HyperText Markup Language. In fact, HTML was one of the first examples of a Markup language but many other's followed.

The idea is awesome - you write text with extra information indicating how you want the text displayed or where to put a picture or a link or a program or all kinds of things.

### HTML example¶

As a very simple example:

Can be typed:

Click <a href="https://marksmath.org/">here</a>!
<span style="font-style:italic">Do it</span>,
<span style="font-weight:bold">Do it</span>!

### Markdown¶

The problem with Markup is that it can become quite cumbersome. Thus, Markdown came along as a lightweight alternative. For example, the previous "Click here! Do it, Do it!" example can be typed as

Click [here](https://marksmath.org)! *Do it*, **Do it**!



Note that italic and bold text are particularly simple. Generally, you can do more with Markup but the things that can be done with Markdown are relatively simple.

### Extensions¶

Markdown is relatively small but it can be extended. For example, our forum uses an extension of Markdown to enable AsciiMath. That's why %%x^2%% will render as $x^2$, when you type it in the forum.

### Other uses¶

Markdown is used very widely in technical communication. Lot's of forum software like Quora and StackExchange use it; as do a number of website builders, and editors for technical documentation.

Not only does our forum use it but so does our Python environment.

Speaking of the forum, let's go take a look.

## Python and Colab¶

We'll be using a computer language called Python to manipulate, visualize, and do computations with data.