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MathGroup Archive 2005

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Re: General--tracing the solver

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg62970] Re: General--tracing the solver
  • From: David Bailey <dave at Remove_Thisdbailey.co.uk>
  • Date: Fri, 9 Dec 2005 06:19:40 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <dn8gkv$bv9$1@smc.vnet.net>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

Hi,

In general, I think the methods used by Mathematica are vastly different 
from those used in hand calculations. For example, a lot of integration 
is done using very complicated objects known as HypergeometricPFQ and 
MeierG functions. These are translated back to something simpler (where 
possible) before the result is presented.

The problem with your idea is that unless you actually do a fair amount 
of math by hand, you don't get the feel for what it really means and how 
things work. It may seem a waste of time, but I would encourage you to 
bear with it! Perhaps the lecturers should discuss this issue a bit.

Mathematica can be a great help in learning math provided that you don't 
just use it to cheat. You can use it to generate examples of similar 
problems to the one you are looking at, or to explore more difficult 
problems.

David Bailey
http://www.dbaileyconsultancy.co.uk


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