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MathGroup Archive 2007

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Re: Re: RE: Re: Sometimes <space> means multiple


I compltely agree. I also think that any comparisons between C++ and  
Mathematica in this respect are completely off the mark, unless of  
course sombody decides to develop an analogue of "TradtitionalForm"  
for C++.

I would also like to point out the following obvious but not  
insignificant fact. Enter  a b (or 2 3  if you prefer) and convert to  
InputForm. You will obtain an explicit asterisk in place of the  
space. Conversely, enter a*b and convert to TraditionalForm (or even  
StandardForm). You will get a space instead of the asterisk. This, in  
my opinion,  is exactly how it should be. In fact, I am somewhat  
shocked that anyone would claim otherwise.

Andrzej Kozlowski


On 29 Apr 2007, at 16:14, Murray Eisenberg wrote:

> Why "mistake"?  Why not allow Mathematica to mimic as much of
> traditional mathematical notation as possible without running into
> genuine ambiguity?
>
> After all, it's really convenient to be able to use 2 Exp[x] and Cos[2
> t] -- and even 2Exp[x] and Cos[2t] -- without having to insert an  
> extra,
> distracting multiplication symbol.  Then the usage in 2 4, for  
> example,
> just extends that.
>
> In my own work, I ordinarily include an explicit multiplication symbol
> -- and I prefer the multiplication sign one gets from Esc * Esc  
> instead 
> of the FORTRANish * -- when the factors are numbers.  There's  
> nothing to
> prevent you from doing that if you don't like the implicit
> multiplication indicated by a space.
>
>
> Virgilio, Vincent - SSD wrote:
>> Personally, I think it was a mistake to overload the meaning of  
>> "space"
>> to multiply. I bet Wolfram Inc. would reverse that decision now,  
>> if it
>> wasn't for backward compatibility.
>>
>> I like to compare Mathematica to C++. Somewhere in his writings,  
>> Bjarne
>> Stroustrup mentions the same issue, and his decision not to overload
>> whitespace. I think the question also arises on the Boost mailing  
>> lists
>> now and then, mostly tongue-in-cheek.
>>
>> (Corrections welcome.)
>>
>> Vince Virgilio
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Bill Rowe [mailto:readnewsciv at sbcglobal.net]
>> Sent: Thursday, April 26, 2007 3:35 AM
>> To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
>> Subject: [mg75364] [mg75358] Re: Sometimes <space> means  
>> multiple , sometimes not
>>
>> On 4/25/07 at 5:27 AM, siewsk at bp.com wrote:
>>
>>> As a newbie, I was taught that <space> character in Mathematica  
>>> means
>>> multiple. But sometimes it does not.
>>
>>> For example:
>>
>> <examples snipped>
>>
>> Mathematica allows spaces to be placed before or after any operation.
>> Consequently, a space is only interpreted as a multiply when there  
>> is no
>> other operator or other possible interpretation.
>>
>> So, -4 -2 is the same as -4 - 2 or -4-2 and gives -6 but
>>      -4 (-2) will yield 8
>> --
>> To reply via email subtract one hundred and four
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>
> -- 
> Murray Eisenberg                     murray at math.umass.edu
> Mathematics & Statistics Dept.
> Lederle Graduate Research Tower      phone 413 549-1020 (H)
> University of Massachusetts                413 545-2859 (W)
> 710 North Pleasant Street            fax   413 545-1801
> Amherst, MA 01003-9305
>



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