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Should I get Matlab or Mathematica or ?

I am in the market for a math program to do some simulations with.
I want a general purpose tool that will let me do algebra and
calculus as well as working with signal processing.  I also have
interests in fuzzy logic and neural nets, chaos, fractals, etc...

I have seen a nice package called "Calculus and Mathematica" that
makes me think Mathematica is a nice expandable program, but then
I have seem some DSP work that is done with Matlab.  Some of the
people here at The University of Arizona swear by both MathCad and
Maple...  Unfortunately, though, nobody seems to be able to give
me any qualitative reason "why" though...  So, anybody have any
suggestions?  I'm looking for the whys - it seems as if all of
these programs are "professional" level tools - so I want to find
out what really separates them.  And of course, if anyone can
point out other possibilities, I'm open to them too...

I'm working with an Intel based computer - I routinely
switch between Win3.1, WinNT and Linux, as well as my ole'
friend DOS, so I'll go where ever the software works...



Doug Wellington
welling at
doug at
System and Network Administrator
US Geological Survey
Tucson, AZ Project Office
(602) 670-6821 x26

According to proposed Federal guidelines, this message is a "non-record".
Hmm, I wonder if _everything_ I say is a "non-record"...

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