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MathGroup Archive 1995

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Re: Word - Mathematica connection

  • To: mathgroup at christensen.cybernetics.net
  • Subject: [mg687] Re: Word - Mathematica connection
  • From: Todd Gayley <tgayley>
  • Date: Sun, 9 Apr 1995 23:49:41 -0500

In article <3m9j4k$fmt at news0.cybernetics.net> glgesm at engr.psu.edu (Gary L. Gray)
 writes:

.. quoted articles deleted ...

>I would like to add something to this.
>
>The MathWorks has recently added the option of using Word 6.0 as a
>front-end to MATLAB (I am using a Mac). The front-end is actually rather
>nice, but still not as nice as the FE for Mma on the Mac. In addition, it
>is painfully slow. It is so slow, that I don't even consider using it for
>everyday work -- I still use MATLAB the "old-fashioned" way. The only time
>I use it is when I am preparing a presentation for a class. I hope that if
>Wolfram is considering replacing the current FE with Word 6, they make
>sure that it responds as fast or faster than the current FE. I would hate
>to see Mathematica become a dog the way MATLAB is with Word.
>
>Best regards,
>--
>Gary L. Gray                     |  (814) 863-1778
>Assistant Professor              |  (814) 863-7967 (fax)
>Engineering Science & Mechanics  |  glgesm at engr.psu.edu
>Penn State University            |  AOL: GLGray
>

The world can rest assured that WRI has no intention whatosever of abandoning
its front end. The upcoming link to Word is a small product designed to enhance
the use of Mathematica by giving access to features of a notebook-style
environment in Word. You can take advantage of Word's spell- and grammar-
checking (that ignores input and output cells), multi-column layout, graphics
that can be positioned anywhere on the page, etc. For all the complaints of
"feature bloat" in Word, it has a lot of nifty stuff, and a macro language
powerful enough to program sophisticated mini-applications.

A couple of our competitors have produced Word-based interfaces, and they are
taking some heat from customers who fear that this is the future of their
interface development. I don't know whether that is the case or not, but these
companies have very weak "native" interfaces. WRI has a mature, sophisticated
front end that is in no danger of being replaced by Microsoft Word.

I have seen MATLAB's Word interface, and, like you, was amazed at how slow it
is. Our interface is faster, although it is no match for the native front end
(WordBasic is not the fastest language).


Todd Gayley
MathLink Applications
WRI



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