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Re: Mathematica etc.

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  • Subject: [mg5449] Re: [mg5385] Mathematica etc.
  • From: Sherman Reed <Sherman.Reed at>
  • Date: Sat, 7 Dec 1996 00:26:26 -0500
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

At 07:50 PM 12/5/96 +0000, you wrote:
>I would like to know more about Mathematica. Can it do signal processing
problems and control systems problems? Can it display 
>Nyquist or Root Locus or Bode plots? Is it easy to use and fun? 
>Also, there is a student version at the bookstore which is version
>2.0 with an option to upgrade to 3.0. Is the student version 
>same as the full-blown version? What are the differences between the two if
there are any? 
As far as Signal Processing problems, control system problems, Nyquist, 
Root Locus and or Bode plots, the answer is not only yes but a resounding yes.
Further, it is customizable to your desires, that is the language is extensible.

Is it easy to use?  It depends on your viewpoint.  Mma (my shorthand for 
Mathematica) is a computer algebra system that does algebra far better than
I can, and without error.  From my viewpoint it is a pleasure to have a strong
algebra program do my dirty work.  Is that fun and easy, you bet.

As I understand the current student version, it is the same as the professional
version.  In the past the major difference was in the use of the math
but today they are the same. I use the professional version under Win95 and
on a NeXT.

The student version comes with an abbreviated text (the Mma text is 1400 pages 
long, and well worth it) plus about 500 to 600 pages of support packages
(application specific).

Using Mma will make you a better scientist or engineer and the envy of your
associates who try to keep up with manual algebra.

I have taught Mma for the last six years in a combined grad and undergrad
course called Numerical Methods with Mma.  It is a tough course but well 
worth the effort.


sherman reed
Bell-Labs, retired
UTA, EE, retired

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