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RE: Pattern matching algorithm

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg46364] RE: [mg46185] Pattern matching algorithm
  • From: "Wolf, Hartmut" <Hartmut.Wolf at>
  • Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2004 23:41:50 -0500 (EST)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

>-----Original Message-----
>From: Jean-Guillaume Pyraksos [mailto:jeapy at]
To: mathgroup at
>Sent: Tuesday, February 10, 2004 6:06 AM
>To: mathgroup at
>Subject: [mg46364] [mg46185] Pattern matching algorithm
>Where can I find a description (in symbolic form or much better in 
>Mathematica) of the algorithm used to interpret pattern-matching ?
>Did anybody try to translate rules:
>foo[{}] = 1;
>into a function:
>foo := Function[L,If[...]]
>More generally, is there an interpreter of the Mathematica 
>language core 
>in Mathematica or Lisp ?
>    JGP


to gain more insight there certainly is the Mathematica Book and now quite a
lot of very good books, e.g. from Roman E. Maeder and the forthcoming from
Michael Trott to begin with.

However there is no published formal operational semantics specification for
the language from where you may build an interpreter (as is the case for
Lisp, e.g.).  Such you have to rely to (more or less educated) guesses and
perhaps some experimentation.  However you have to respect the borderline to
not reverse engineer the product, which is clearly prohibited.  Prof.
Richard Fateman ( had done an attempt
to model an early version of Mathematica in Common Lisp, but I guess he
didn't make friends with WRI. 

Hartmut Wolf

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