Algorithm Analysis Course: Should I use Mathematica for projects?

*To*: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net*Subject*: [mg127261] Algorithm Analysis Course: Should I use Mathematica for projects?*From*: Brentt <brenttnewman at gmail.com>*Date*: Wed, 11 Jul 2012 18:23:52 -0400 (EDT)*Delivered-to*: l-mathgroup@mail-archive0.wolfram.com*Delivered-to*: mathgroup-newout@smc.vnet.net*Delivered-to*: mathgroup-newsend@smc.vnet.net

Hi, I'm an undergrad math major, and taking a cross disciplinary Algorithm Analysis course in the fall. I talked to the professor and he said we can use whichever language we like and Mathematica would be fine if it had a way to evaluate run-time. Two questions: I think the required capabilities are those found in the documentation under "Time Measurement & Optimization". Would this be correct? And would those functions be adequate for an algorithm analysis course? I know this list would be a little biased but: should I use Mathematica? Cons: I absolutely adore Mathematica and never find myself wanting to program in anything else (I've toyed with Python and other languages, but Mathematica inspires me to play with programming like other languages have not), and thought committing to Python for the class might expand my programming skills. Also I'm guessing the course will focus on procedural algorithms which might not be a good fit for Mathematica's functional paradigm. I know Mathematica can be shoehorned in to any paradigm, but maybe it'd be better to use a more procedural language. Pros: I will learn Mathematica with more depth, and there are good reasons to get really good at one thing as opposed to OK at many things. Plus what I learn in Mathematica may just as well translate to other languages anyway so it may not be a big deal which I choose. Input anyone?

**Follow-Ups**:**Re: Algorithm Analysis Course: Should I use Mathematica***From:*James Stein <mathgroup@stein.org>