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MathGroup Archive 2007

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Fwd: Re: Re: Any Mathematica 6 book yet?

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg81589] Fwd: [mg81543] Re: [mg81497] Re: Any Mathematica 6 book yet?
  • From: "peter lindsay" <plindsay at mcs.st-and.ac.uk>
  • Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 02:17:00 -0400 (EDT)
  • References: <200709261035.GAA06256@smc.vnet.net>

The Mathematica Book by Wolfram was a major achievement and added much
to the value of the "Mathematica" experience. I can see a new version
of the book only adding to the value of the product, even if it has to
come in several volumes. I wish they'd get on with it .....


P. Lindsay


On 27/09/2007, Murray Eisenberg <murray at math.umass.edu> wrote:
> I'm not sure a book or two will suffice to overcome this difficulty.
>
> The surest way to get engineers and scientists to use a "new" tool such
> as Mathematica is to train the next generation to use it and wait for
> the old generation to die off.  But then the problem becomes how to get
> just enough far-sighted individuals (such as ourselves, naturally) to
> teach the new tool, often against the opposition of the faculty in
> client departments or of our own colleagues.
>
> I suspect the important factor will not be any books about Mathematica
> itself, but rather subject-specific textbooks that happen to use
> Mathematica in an essential and integrated manner and whose content is
> so compelling as to make them irresistible to adoption.
>
> Familiarity with an old tool is something really hard to dislodge as the
> supreme motivating factor.
>
> I sometimes find it utterly amazing how deeply some mathematicians,
> scientists, or engineers believe that Mathematica is deficient in being
> handle this or that kind of problem (typically said about numerics, but
> sometime about graphics, too).
>
> Folks can make up all sorts of rationalizations to excuse their not
> taking the time to learn something new.  And if you try to show them
> that a particular rationalization, or misconception, is wrong, they just
> repeat or invent another.
>
> AES wrote:
> > AES wrote:
> >
> >>   In article <fd7s0t$ceh$1 at smc.vnet.net>,
> >>   Murray Eisenberg <murray at math.umass.edu> wrote:
> >>
> >>>   Or as least work with some inside authors.
> >>>
> >>>   I believe that part of the early success of Mathematica was
> >>>   Wolfram's carefully seeding the marketplace with encouragement, if
> >>>   not actual support, of a number of books about it.
> >
> >
> > Absolutely agreed.
> >
> > And failing to do so this time around will cost them -- especially when
> > combined with the comparatively high price and the perceived complexity
> > of Mathematica.
> >
> > I interact with a *lot* of engineering and science students and
> > professional researchers, and attempt to promote Mathematica as much as
> > I can, out of my own self interest in being able to work in it and
> > communicate with others about it as much as anything else.
> >
> > The response, from a very substantial majority I would say, is that they
> > are already familiar with other competitive products that they have
> > encountered in their various classes, and see no reason to change.
> >
>
> --
> 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
>
>


--
peter lindsay


-- 
peter lindsay


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