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Re: How does Mma work on a Mac Powerbook 170?

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  • Subject: Re: How does Mma work on a Mac Powerbook 170?
  • From: mek at (Mark E. Kotanchek)
  • Date: Mon, 21 Sep 92 11:45:38 EDT

Hi Folks,

Thanks to Magnus, Stefano, Tin Yau, Sherman, Elliot, Bill, David, and Ed for  
their comments on the topic. The general consensus seems to be that the NeXT  
advantages of a "real" operating system and faster processor makes Mma much  
better there than on the Mac--expecially the Powerbook which has that  
hardwired limit of 8 MB of RAM. 

I took Ed's timing numbers and ran the same commands on my NeXTstation (25  
MHz '040 with 32 MB of RAM and we got:


         Mac SE/30   -- 1.58 secs
         NeXTstation -- 0.15 secs (Mac is 10.5 times slower)

         Mac SE/30   -- 39.9 secs
         NeXTstation --  3.3 secs (Mac is 12.1 times slower)

         Mac SE/30   -- 220.7 secs
         NeXTstation --  59.6 secs (Mac is 3.7 times slower)

So it would appear that for numerical stuff, the '040 is a significant  
advantage. I'm not sure that this advantage would hold up for symbolic  
computations; however, the need for RAM by symbolic computations coupled  
with the relatively primitive Mac OS probably implies that I'd run into  
problems on the Mac once I got into anything really interesting. In summary,  
Mma on the Powerbook would be functionally acceptable but not necessarily as  
pleasurable as on the NeXT.

The bottom line is that I'll hang onto my pennies and eventually spring for  
the NeXT--which has a much better user environment for day-to-day use as  
well as better Mma performance.

Thanks for the input,

Mark Kotanchek
Guidance & Control Dept - 363 ASB
Applied Research Lab/Penn State
P.O. Box 30
State College, PA 16804

e-mail:	mek at (NeXTmail)
TEL:	(814)863-0682
FAX:	(814)863-7843

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