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Re: Re: I broke the sum into pieces

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  • Subject: [mg105102] Re: [mg105089] Re: I broke the sum into pieces
  • From: Daniel Lichtblau <danl at>
  • Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 03:32:50 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <> <> <>

Roger Bagula wrote:
> Alexander Povolotsky wrote:
>> Did you verify that with your friend - that guy who runs Mathematica group ?
>> On 11/19/09, Roger Bagula <rlbagula at> wrote:
>>>  [...]
> Alexander Povolotsky,
> No I haven't reported this.
> Since the Mathematica guys ( Trott and Wolfram himself) put up my Beta 
> cube fractal
> without giving me any credit for it, they are on my list, ha, ha...
> [...]

I think this calls for a response.

First, let me agree that it is unfortunate you were not given 
appropriate credit for your work. That said, I will point out both that 
there are ways in which the damage was self inflicted, and that there 
have been (and continue to be) efforts to rectify it.

Here is the demonstration in question.

As you have found (and posted to MathGroup), it now cites "Based on work 
by: Roger Bagula". This came about on October 27 of this year. I had 
received a request to get your name added on October 25, a Sunday, added 
it Monday, and the automated update publication took place early on the 
27th. So I'd say it was handled quickly, at least from the time it came 
to the attention of someone on the Demonstrations Team (myself, in this 

We all agree the demonstration is based on work from a MathGroup post of 

Your original version predates the arrival of Manipulate, and moreover 
would not run fast enough in the original form. So people here reworked 
it to fit the framework of the then-under-development Demonstrations 
project. This was in fact done at the request of Stephen Wolfram--who I 
gather had seen the MathGroup post--and I guess that's how the 
"Suggested by:" field came to bear his name.

Here is where things start to come back to you. People in the Wolfram 
Demonstrations project are reluctant to get mixed in anything involving 
yourself. I expect you know why, and I'll not discuss that further. 
Suffice it to say, they have sound reasons, and hence made no comment 
regarding the authorship. I question my own judgement in responding now, 
but as I take responsibity for trouble-shooting such issues involving 
Demonstrations, I feel it is something of an obligation.

I will also mention that there are ways to bring improper citation to 
our attention. Best at the time of your note (last month) was to fill 
out the "Give us your feedback" form at the bottom of the 
demonstration's web page. More recently the pages have been revised, and 
there is now also a button "Report an issue", which also brings up the 
comment box. The difference being, it is even more obvious that a 
comment can be in the form of reporting problems such as missing 
attribution. In any case, we have had issues raised with other 
demonstrations, both in terms of correctness and citation. And we have 
endeavored to address such issues.

Back to the matter at hand. I've spent more time today than I care to 
recall in going over the original code in the MathGroup post, the 
various stages of development of the final product, who contributed what 
when, etc. My conclusion is that the authorship should change to give 
credit to you. Below that it will also state "Additional contributions 
by: The Wolfram Demonstrations Team". I will take the liberty of 
assuming this is a desirable outcome from your point of view.

Daniel Lichtblau
Wolfram Research

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