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Re: Re: Looking for more Mathematica online user groups/forums

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg98873] Re: [mg98804] Re: [mg98787] Looking for more Mathematica online user groups/forums
  • From: John Fultz <jfultz at>
  • Date: Mon, 20 Apr 2009 19:11:57 -0400 (EDT)
  • Reply-to: jfultz at

One point of clarification to the points you raise in your last paragraph. 
Almost every post from a WRI staffer on this forum *is* voluntary, excepting
product announcements and job ads, of course.  Not even Dan Lichtblau and I,
the most prolific WRI posters here, have anything to do with MathGroup
as part of our official job description, and certainly not the many other
staffers who have posted less often.

Aside from promoting the forum and supporting its moderation, the company 
expends little official effort, so I don't think you have much to worry
about there.  And the company benefits significantly because it allows
us collectively (including a great many staff members who lurk on this
forum) to keep a metaphorical finger on the pulse of the Mathematica
user community.

But as for the postings from WRI staffers, Wolfram's biggest contribution
is to leave us unfettered to do so.

John Fultz
jfultz at
User Interface Group
Wolfram Research, Inc.

On Mon, 20 Apr 2009 01:28:27 -0400 (EDT), robert prince-wright wrote:
> I asked the same question at a summer school last year. In the past Sarah
> Flannery?? worked on an online collaboration tool but I gather there were
> security problems and risks from malware being sneaked onto our systems
> via Mathematica commands.
> As far as I can see, MathGroup is the best forum but the information
> exchange mechanism is a little outdated. Luuk B. tried to get a Wiki
> going but I couldn't see a clear reason for using it and not MG.
> I occasionally wonder if there will be a point when Steve gets tired of
> supporting the group and what would happen at that point - I suspect
> there is a significant amount of effort on his part. It seems odd that
> WRI don't host something with voluntary support from staff. It could be
> something as simple as standard Forum - that would give us all the chance
> to have Profiles, share files etc. It would also make it easier for Steve
> and others to moderate.
> Robert
> ----- Original Message ----
> From: meitnik <meitnik at>
> To: mathgroup at
> Sent: Sunday, April 19, 2009 3:54:05 AM
> Subject: [mg98804] [mg98787] Looking for more Mathematica online user
> groups/forums
> WRI,
> Since Home edition offers me only 30 days tech support and I am not a
> student around other Mathematica using students on a campus. And
> buying expensive books does only cover so much (And many are outdated
> or does not cover areas outside of math like the Frontend), where on
> the internet do I find help thats more real time? This group has been
> very helpful, but I want more rapid turn around time, and someone to
> teach why some code is good and mine is bad so I learn from mistakes .
> And a big thanks for the few who has taught me well. :-)
> I do find it strange there is not a more active WRI collection of
> people part of a tech support forum somewhere. A whiteboard version of
> the FE to aid in support could be a good direction. Collaborative
> editing FE in real time somehow? How about a Home Ed users forum on
> WRI site??
> Or perhaps allow Home Edition users email support; if it is so, be
> clear it is so and how long the turn around time for a reply. Or
> encourage local universities to create local Mathematica support
> groups.
> Mathematics is a social activity as much as any other creative one;
> helping each other is a great way to enjoy learning.
> Andrew, seeking some shoulders to stand on ;-)

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