Mathematica
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Developed by  Wolfram Research 

Initial release  June 23, 1988^{[1]} 
Stable release  7.0.1 (March 3rd 2009) _{[+/−]} 
Preview release  n/a (n/a) _{[+/−]} 
Written in  C 
Platform  Crossplatform (list) 
Available in  multilingual 
Type  Computer algebra, numerical computations, Information visualization, statistics, user interface creation 
License  Proprietary 
Website  Mathematica homepage 
Mathematica is a computational software program used widely in scientific, engineering, and mathematical fields and other areas of technical computing. It was originally conceived by Stephen Wolfram and developed by a team of mathematicians and programmers that he assembled and led. It is developed by Wolfram Research of Champaign, Illinois.^{[2]}^{[3]}
Contents 
[edit] Features
Some features of Mathematica include^{[4]}:
 Libraries of elementary and special mathematical functions
 2D and 3D data and function visualization tools
 Matrix and data manipulation tools including support for sparse arrays
 Solvers for systems of equations, ODEs, PDEs, DAEs, DDEs and recurrence relations
 Numeric and symbolic tools for discrete and continuous calculus
 Multivariate statistics libraries
 Constrained and unconstrained local and global optimization
 A programming language supporting procedural, functional and object oriented constructs
 A toolkit for adding user interfaces to calculations and applications
 Tools for image processing ^{[5]}
 Tools for visualizing and analysing graphs
 Data mining tools such as cluster analysis, sequence alignment and pattern matching
 Libraries of number theory functions
 Continuous and discrete integral transforms
 Import and export filters for data, images, video, sound, CAD, GIS, document and biomedical formats
 A collection of databases of mathematical, scientific, and socioeconomic information (see below)
 Support for complex number, arbitrary precision and symbolic computation for all functions
 Notebook interface for review and reuse of previous inputs and outputs including graphics and text annotations
 Technical word processing including formula editing
[edit] Front ends
Mathematica is split into two parts, the "kernel" and the "front end". The kernel interprets expressions (Mathematica code) and returns result expressions.
The Mathematica Front End provides a GUI interface which allows the creation and editing of Notebook documents which can contain program code with prettyprinting, formatted text together with results including typeset mathematics, graphics, GUI components, tables and sounds. All contents and formatting can be generated algorithmically or interactively edited and most standard word processing capabilities are supported but only one level of "undo" is supported.
Documents can be structured using a hierarchy of cells, which allow for outlining and sectioning of a document and support automatic numbering index creation. Documents can be presented in a slide show environment for presentations. Starting with version 3.0 of the software, notebooks and their contents are represented as Mathematica expressions that can be created, modified or analysed by Mathematica programs. This allows conversion to other formats such as TeX or XML.
The Mathematica Front End includes development tools such as a debugger, input completion and automatic syntax coloring.
The kernel and the front end communicate via the MathLink protocol. It is possible to use the kernel on one computer and the front end on another.
The standard Mathematica front end is used by default, but alternative front ends are available:
 The Wolfram Workbench is an Eclipse based IDE, introduced in 2006, that provides project based code development tools for Mathematica, including revision management, debugging, profiling, and testing.^{[6]}
 Microsoft Excel can be used as a front end to Mathematica.
 GUIKit allows the construction of custom interfaces to Mathematica using the Java Swing libraries.
 Mathematica includes a command line front end.
 JMath is a third party front end based on GNU readline that runs on UNIXlike operating systems.^{[7]}
 MASH makes it possible to run self contained Mathematica programs (with arguments) from the UNIX command line.^{[8]}
[edit] Highperformance computing
In recent years the capabilities for highperformance computing have been extended with the introduction of packed arrays (version 4, 1999) ^{[9]}, sparse matrices (version 5, 2003)^{[10]}, and by adopting the free GNU MultiPrecision Library to evaluate highprecision arithmetic.
Version 5.2 (2005) added automatic multithreading when computations are performed on modern multicore computers.^{[11]} This release included CPU specific optimized libraries. In addition Mathematica is supported by third party specialist acceleration hardware such as ClearSpeed.^{[12]}
In 2002 gridMathematica was introduced to allow user level parallel programming on heterogeneous clusters and multiprocessor systems ^{[13]} and in 2008 parallel computing technology was included in all Mathematica licenses including support for grid technology such as Windows HPC Server 2008, Microsoft Compute Cluster Server and Sun Grid.
[edit] Development
Several solutions are available for deploying applications written in Mathematica:
 Mathematica Player Pro is a runtime version of Mathematica that will run any Mathematica application but does not allow editing or creation of the code.^{[14]}
 Mathematica Player is a free interactive player is provided for running Mathematica programs that have been digitally signed for noncommercial use via a Wolfram Research web service, or published on the Wolfram Demonstrations Project website. It can also view unsigned Mathematica files, but not run them.
 webMathematica allows a web browser to act as a front end to a remote Mathematica server. It is designed to allow a user written application to be remotely accessed via a browser on any platform. It may not be used to give full access to Mathematica. The current version of webMathematica (2.3) does not support Mathematica 6.
[edit] Connections with other applications
Communication with other applications occurs through a protocol called MathLink. It allows communication between the Mathematica kernel and frontend, and also provides a general interface between the kernel and other applications. Wolfram Research freely distributes a developer kit for linking applications written in the C programming language to the Mathematica kernel through MathLink.^{[15]} Two other components of Mathematica, whose underlying protocol is MathLink, allow developers to establish communication between the kernel and a .NET or Java program: .NET/Link.^{[16]} and J/Link.^{[17]}
Using .NET/Link, a .NET program can ask Mathematica to perform computations; likewise, a Mathematica program can load .NET classes, manipulate .NET objects and perform method calls. This makes it possible to build .NET graphical user interfaces from within Mathematica. Similar functionality is achieved with J/Link, but with Java programs instead of .NET programs.
Communication with SQL databases is achieved through builtin support for JDBC.^{[18]}
Mathematica can also install web services from a WSDL description.^{[19]}^{[20]}
Mathematical equations can be exchanged with other computational or typesetting software as MathML.
[edit] Computable data
Mathematica includes large collections of curated data in a consistent framework for immediate computation. Data can be accessed programmatically to inform or test models and is updated automatically from a data server at Wolfram Research. Some data such as share prices and weather are delivered in realtime. Data sets currently include:
 Astronomical data: 99 properties of 155,000 astronomical bodies
 Chemical data: 111 properties of 34,000 chemical compounds, 86 properties of 118 chemical elements and 35 properties of 1000 subatomic particles
 Geopolitical data: 225 properties of 237 countries and 14 properties of 160,000 cities around the world
 Financial data: 71 historical and realtime properties of 186,000 shares and financial instruments
 Mathematical data: 89 properties of 187 polyhedra, 258 properties of 3000 graphs, 63 properties of 6 knots, 37 properties of 21 lattice structures, 32 properties of 52 geodesic schemes
 Language data: 37 properties of 149,000 English words. 26 additional language dictionaries
 Biomedical data: 41 properties of all 40,000 human genes, 30 properties of 27,000 proteins
 Weather data: live and historical measurements of 43 properties of 17,000 weather stations around the world
[edit] Licensing
Mathematica is proprietary software protected by both trade secret and copyright law.^{[21]}
A regular singleuser license for Mathematica costs around US$23002500, and includes four additional kernels for parallel computations and one year of service which includes updates, technical support, a home use license, a webMathematica Amateur license^{[22]}, a Wolfram Workbench license and three Mathematica Player Pro licenses. Discounts are available for government, charity, educational, precollege, school, student, home use^{[23]} and retiree use and depend on geographical region. Educational site licenses allow use by students at home. A license manager similar to Flexlm is available to provide sharing of licenses within a group.
[edit] Platform availability
Mathematica 7 is supported on various versions of Microsoft Windows, Apple's Mac OS X, Linux and Sun's Solaris platforms. All platforms are supported with 64bit implementations.^{[24]} Earlier versions of Mathematica supported other operating systems, including MSDOS, NeXTSTEP, HPUX, IRIX, Ultrix, OS/2, Convex and AIX.
The Mathematica Home Edition, is a 32bit application on Microsoft Windows. The Home Edition also runs on Mac OS X (Intel) and Linux, but not Solaris. Whether there is a 32bit limitation on Mac OS X and Linux for the Home Edition is not clear from the FAQ.
[edit] Version history
Mathematica built on the ideas in Cole and Wolfram's earlier Symbolic Manipulation Program (SMP).^{[25]}^{[26]}
Wolfram Research has released the following versions of Mathematica^{[27]}:
 Mathematica 1.0 (1988)^{[28]}
 Mathematica 1.2 (1989)^{[29]}
 Mathematica 2.0 (1991)^{[30]}
 Mathematica 2.1 (1992)^{[15]}
 Mathematica 2.2 (1993)^{[31]}
 Mathematica 3.0 (1996)^{[32]}
 Mathematica 4.0 (1999)^{[33]}
 Mathematica 4.1 (2000)
 Mathematica 4.2 (2002)^{[17]}
 Mathematica 5.0 (2003)^{[34]}
 Mathematica 5.1 (2004)^{[35]}
 Mathematica 5.2 (2005)^{[36]}
 Mathematica 6.0 (2007)^{[37]}
 Mathematica 6.0.1 (2007)
 Mathematica 6.0.2 (2008)
 Mathematica 6.0.3 (2008)
 Mathematica 7.0 (2008)^{[38]}
 Mathematica 7.0.1 (2009)
[edit] See also
Wikibooks has a book on the topic of 
 Wolfram Research
 Stephen Wolfram
 Theodore Gray
 Publicon
 IMTEK Mathematica Supplement, an open source Mathematica addon for Finite Element Simulation
 MathModelica System Designer, modeling and simulation environment for Mathematica
 List of graphing software
 List of computer simulation software
[edit] References
 ^ http://blog.wolfram.com/2008/06/23/mathematicaturns20today/
 ^ Stephen Wolfram: Simple Solutions; The iconoclastic physicist's Mathematica software nails complex puzzles, BusinessWeek, October 3, 2005.
 ^ Wolfram Research Contact Info
 ^ Mathematica documentation
 ^ Review: Mathematica 7. Technical computing powerhouse gets more oomph Macworld, Jan 2009
 ^ MacWorld review of Wolfram Workbench
 ^ JMath website
 ^ MASH website
 ^ Math software packs new power; new programs automate such tedious processes as solving nonlinear differential equations and converting units by Agnes Shanley, Chemical Engineering, March 1, 2002.
 ^ Mathematica 5.1: additional features make software wellsuited for operations research professionals by ManMohan S. Sodhi, OR/MS Today, December 1, 2004.
 ^ The 21st annual Editors' Choice Awards, Macworld, February 1, 2006.
 ^ ClearSpeed Advance(TM) Accelerator Boards Certified by Wolfram Research; Math Coprocessors Enable Mathematica Users to Quadruple Performance.
 ^ gridMathematica offers parallel computing solution by Dennis Sellers, MacWorld, November 20, 2002.
 ^ Mathematica Player Pro  new Application Delivery System for Mathematica www.gizmag.com
 ^ ^{a} ^{b} New Mathematica: faster, leaner, linkable and QuickTimecompatible: MathLink kit allows ties to other apps. (Wolfram Research Inc. ships Mathematica 2.1, new QuickTimecompatible version of Mathematica software) by Daniel Todd, MacWeek, June 15, 1992.
 ^ .NET/Link: .NET/Link is a toolkit that integrates Mathematica and the Microsoft .NET Framework.
 ^ ^{a} ^{b} Mathematica 4.2: FeatureRich Math Program Integrates with the Web, Adds Full Java Support by Charles Seiter, Macworld, November 1, 2002.
 ^ Mathematica 5.1 Available , Database Journal, Jan 3, 2005.
 ^ Mathematical Web Services: W3C Note 1 August 2003
 ^ Introduction to Web Services, Mathematica Web Services Tutorial
 ^ Wolfram Mathematica License Agreement
 ^ webMathematica terms
 ^ Mathematica Home Edition Released Macworld, Feb 2009
 ^ Supported platforms list
 ^ Math, the universe, and Stephen: the author of Mathematica created a whirlwind of scientific controversy this year when, after more than 10 years of research, he published his treatise on the ability of simple structures to create unpredictable complex patterns. (2002 Scientist Of The Year).(Stephen Wolfram) by Tim Studt, R&D, November 1 , 2002.
 ^ A Top Scientist's Latest: Math Software by Andrew Pollack, The New York Times, June 24, 19988.
 ^ Quick Revision History of Mathematica
 ^ Supercomputer Pictures Solve the Once Insoluble, John Markoff, October 30, 1988.
 ^ Mathematica 1.2 adds new graphics options: upgrade also promises concurrent operations by Elinor Craig, MacWeek, July 25, 1989.
 ^ Mathematica + 283 functions = Mathematica 2.0 by Raines Cohen, MacWeek, January 15, 1991.
 ^ New version of Mathematica, Mechanical Engineering, June 1, 1993.
 ^ New Mathematica by Stephen H. Wildstrom, BusinessWeek, June 15, 1997.
 ^ Mathematica 4.0 by Charles Seiters, Macworld, October 1, 1999.
 ^ Mathematica 5.0 Adds Up: Exactly 15 years after Mathematica's initial release, Wolfram Research has released Mathematica , PC Magazine, September 3, 2003.
 ^ Mathematica 5.1's Web Services Add Up; Mathematica 5.1 delivers improvements over Version 5.0 that are vastly out of proportion for a .1 upgrade. by Peter Coffee, eWeek, December 6, 2004.
 ^ Mathematica hits 64bit, MacWorld UK, July 13, 2005.
 ^ Mathematica 6: Felix Grant finds that version 6 of Wolfram Research's symbolic mathematical software really does live up to its expectations. Scientific Computing, 2007.
 ^ Mathematica 7: Released Wolfram Blog, 2008.
[edit] External links
 Wolfram Research
 Mathematica
 Mathematica Documentation Center
 comp.softsys.math.mathematica discussion group
 Google Directories entry containing a wide variety of useful links and tutorials
 Mathematicausers, a wiki for users of Mathematica
 Mathematica Photo Gallery, examples of art using Mathematica
 Will it rot my students' brains if they use Mathematica? by Theodore W. Gray and Jerry Glynn, excerpted from The Beginner's Guide to Mathematica V4, published by Cambridge University Press.
 "Levels Of A Mathematica Expression" by Enrique Zeleny, Wolfram Demonstrations Project.
 A little bit of Mathematica history documenting the growth of code base and number of functions over time.


