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Re: Another point about Mathematica 8.0

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  • Subject: [mg116500] Re: Another point about Mathematica 8.0
  • From: Richard Fateman <fateman at>
  • Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 05:18:54 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <iiten7$jl5$> <ij0e3s$992$> <ijg5p4$91i$>

There are indeed open-source competitors to Mathematica. By
looking at download statistics from sourceforge one
can see that one recent stable release of such a system
had over 214,000 downloads.
Presumably some of them were propagated further, and so the
number of copies exceeds that.

As for whether Wolfram's model is successful or not, people seem to
think that this has something to do with customer satisfaction, or
mathematical scholarship etc. Perhaps, but it would be indirect.
Most business proprietors are in business to make money. Wolfram,
one can assume, is also interested in making money. If you really
think that Wolfram can make more money for himself by changing his
business model, then he presumably would listen.

If you think that Wolfram could make your life happier if he
changed his business model, even though it would make less money
for him, then why not try it on other businesses, like your bank or
your grocery store.

If you so dislike Wolfram's business model, you are free to try to
take your business elsewhere.
If the competition is not sufficient for your needs then
maybe it is because they do not have an adequate business model,
and can't afford to build a system that is sufficient for your

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