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MathGroup Archive 1995

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Re: Performance of student version of Mathematica?

  • To: mathgroup at christensen.cybernetics.net
  • Subject: [mg696] Re: Performance of student version of Mathematica?
  • From: glgesm at engr.psu.edu (Gary L. Gray)
  • Date: Mon, 10 Apr 1995 11:46:20 -0400

In article <3macje$l4i at news0.cybernetics.net>, jburne at connix.com (John
Burnette) wrote:

> In article <3m9jek$fmt at news0.cybernetics.net>,
> Roger Frederi Clark <helios at strauss.udel.edu> wrote:
> >I was curious about this possibility also, so I contacted the 
> >info at wri.com and here's what they said.  The student version will not use 
> >a math coprocessor, even if present.  THe rep said that this makes 
> >little difference for normal calculations, but for large data 
> >sets, numerical calculations, or intensive graphics work, it translates into 
>        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >about 4 times slower.  Unfortunately, this is what I use Mathematica for, 
> 
> etc etc...
> 
> Hello? Gee, unless you want to do something UNUSUAL like NUMERICAL 
> CALCULATIONS...(And what kind of mathematica user would have that in
> mind....) And compare the native code version of mathematica running on a 
> powerpc macintosh to a student version running under 68040 emulation on 
> the same computer.  That is NOT a 4 times slower. Wolfram's OWN 
> ADVERTISING gives numbers like 17 seconds versus 109 seconds (on a Quadra 
> 700, presumably running an enhanced version...) For those with a new 
> PowerMac check out the sample software from Wolfram on the CD sampler.
> 
> Questions for WOLFRAM rep...(surly mode on...)
> 
> 1) Will there ever be a native (student) version of Mathematica for the 
>    powerpc.  Hypothetically, if there was no MacIntosh for sale powered 
>    by something other than a power-pc would this be a factor in your 
>    policy, or should we just be thankful that Mathematica wasn't first
>    created in the 8088 era?
> 2) What will happen to the current user base when OS for Mac and INTEL 
>    computers become multi-tasking? (Both mac and windows claim that is 
>    coming within the next year.) Will you slip code into student version 
>    which checks to see if there is a session already running? Is that code 
>    already there?
> 

[stuff deleted]

In speaking with some people at Wolfram, it is my understanding that in
the next version of Mma (2.3 or 3.0 or whatever), the student version will
not be crippled in any way. If I understood them correctly, students will
have one month to send Wolfram in a copy of their student ID and they will
then be sent a code that will prevent Mma from "crippling" (i.e., removing
fpu/PPC support) itself after one month. This sounds great. If it is true,
I am really glad they are doing this.

Can someone at Wolfram confirm, deny, and/or elaborate on this?

Thank you,
-- 
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


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