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Re: Memory Blowup Issues

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg126891] Re: Memory Blowup Issues
  • From: Bill Rowe <readnews at>
  • Date: Fri, 15 Jun 2012 15:29:10 -0400 (EDT)
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On 6/15/12 at 3:40 AM, szhorvat at (Szabolcs Horv=C3=A1t) wrote:

>On 2012.06.08. 9:37, Bill Rowe wrote:
>>On 6/7/12 at 5:22 AM, ralph.dratman at (Ralph Dratman) wrote:

>>>It seems possible to me that Mathematica, in a slightly different
>>>form and possibly under a different name, could become for today's
>>>computers what Basic was for the Apple II and the IBM PC.

>>This almost certainly won't happen with Mathematica.

>You might find this interesting:


>Quoting the last paragraph:

>"It'll probably be related to my goal in the next year or two of
>making Mathematica definitively the world's easiest to learn

I can accept this is Wolfram's goal and applaud their efforts to
achieve it. However, I still think this is a goal unlikely to be achieved.

It seems clear Wolfram has another goal as well for Mathematica
which is for users to be able to do any computation they can
think of in any field with Mathematica. To that end, the number
of available functions has grown significantly with every
release. Added functions generally increase learning difficulty
if for no other reason than there is more to learn.

Also, if you look at Mathematica as a programming language and
compare it to other programing languages such as BASIC, C++
etc., it seems clear a key distinction is the ability to do
advanced mathematics in Mathematica that cannot be done in other
languages without writing a significant amount of code. If you
don't have a background in mathematics, how could you take
advantage of this distinction? And if you aren't using the
mathematical tools Mathematica offers, why use it over something
like BASIC? Given the relative cost of a Mathematica license and
a BASIC interpreter/compiler, it seems rather silly to invest in
a Mathematica license and not use Mathematica's mathematics toolbox.

Mathematica may well become the easiest to learn language *for
doing mathematics and advanced computation*. But, I don't see
Mathematica becoming the easiest to learn language for say
creating web sites, games and a great many other things that are
created using programing languages.

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