Not an unreasonable question, as I've sometimes had the same experience: why doesn't the Documentation Center just tell you the definition?
I usually resort to Google search at this point, which typically gives me as the top two hits entries at Wikipedia and MathWorld.
There are some situations, though, in which a given function's definition has various possible conventions, e.g., as to normalizing coefficients. It would be especially helpful there if the Mathematica documentation.
On Jun 4, 2013, at 2:00 AM, Dr. Wolfgang Hintze <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> I'm sometimes missing a short path to the *definition* of a > Mathematica function. Perhaps somebody here could give me a hint. > > Example: StandardDeviation > > I'm double clicking the keyword in the notebook, press F1 and arrive > in the help browser which tells me that "StandardDeviation" is the > standard deviation. > Fine, I almost expected that. But now, how is this quantity defined? > This is a simple example, of course, but I admit that I forget > sometimes if it was the sum of the cuadratic differences or the square > root of it, was it 1/n or 1/(n-1)? > > But the same holds for all functions which frequently are defined e.g. > by power series or integrals. I personally would like to see this > definition in the help browser.
--- Murray Eisenberg email@example.com Mathematics & Statistics Dept. Lederle Graduate Research Tower phone 413 549-1020 (H) University of Massachusetts 413 545-2838 (W) 710 North Pleasant Street fax 413 545-1801 Amherst, MA 01003-9305