Jérôme Louradour

New in the Wolfram Language: FindTextualAnswer

February 15, 2018 — Jérôme Louradour, Advanced Research Group

FindTextualAnswer featured image

Are you ever certain that somewhere in a text or set of texts, the answer to a pressing question is waiting to be found, but you don’t want to take the time to skim through thousands of words to find what you’re looking for? Well, soon the Wolfram Language will provide concise answers to your specific, fact-based questions directed toward an unstructured collection of texts (with a technology very different from that of Wolfram|Alpha, which is based on a carefully curated knowledgebase).

Let’s start with the essence of FindTextualAnswer. This feature, available in the upcoming release of the Wolfram Language, answers questions by quoting the most appropriate excerpts of a text that is presumed to contain the relevant information.

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Posted in: Developer Insights

Swede White

Wolfram News Roundup: Neural Net Connectivity, Gravitational Wave Discoveries and More

February 8, 2018 — Swede White, Media & Communications Specialist

Net framework

It’s been an exciting beginning to the new year here at Wolfram Research with the coming release of Version 11.3 of the Wolfram Language, a soft announcement of the Wolfram Neural Net Repository and our launch of multiparadigm data science.

As part of the new year, we’re also launching some new content in the Public Relations department. As you may have seen, each month we are highlighting the accomplishments of our members on Wolfram Community. We are also recapping news and events about Wolfram each month. So, in case you missed the latest, check out these news stories:

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Posted in: Wolfram News

Ed Pegg Jr

Cultivating New Solutions for the Orchard-Planting Problem

February 2, 2018 — Ed Pegg Jr, Editor, Wolfram Demonstrations Project

11 trees in threes

Some trees are planted in an orchard. What is the maximum possible number of distinct lines of three trees? In his 1821 book Rational Amusement for Winter Evenings, J. Jackson put it this way:

Fain would I plant a grove in rows
But how must I its form compose
            With three trees in each row;
To have as many rows as trees;
Now tell me, artists, if you please:
            ’Tis all I want to know.

Those familiar with tic-tac-toe, three-in-a-row might wonder how difficult this problem could be, but it’s actually been looked at by some of the most prominent mathematicians of the past and present. This essay presents many new solutions that haven’t been seen before, shows a general method for finding more solutions and points out where current best solutions are improvable.

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Christopher Carlson

The Wolfram Language Bridges Mathematics and the Arts

January 26, 2018 — Christopher Carlson, Senior User Interface Developer, User Interfaces

Every summer, 200-some artists, mathematicians and technologists gather at the Bridges conference to celebrate connections between mathematics and the arts. It’s five exuberant days of sharing, exploring, puzzling, building, playing and discussing diverse artistic domains, from poetry to sculpture.

Bridges conference

The Wolfram Language is essential to many Bridges attendees’ work. It’s used to explore ideas, puzzle out technical details, design prototypes and produce output that controls production machines. It’s applied to sculpture, graphics, origami, painting, weaving, quilting—even baking.

In the many years I’ve attended the Bridges conferences, I’ve enjoyed hearing about these diverse applications of the Wolfram Language in the arts. Here is a selection of Bridges artists’ work.

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Eila Stiegler
Jeffrey Bryant

Running the Numbers with the Illinois Marathon Viewer

January 18, 2018
Eila Stiegler, Quality Analysis Manager, Wolfram|Alpha Quality Analysis
Jeffrey Bryant, Research Programmer, Wolfram|Alpha Scientific Content

I love to run. A lot. And many of my coworkers do too. You can find us everywhere, and all the time: on roads, in parks, on hills and mountains, and even running up and down parking decks, a flat lander’s version of hills. And if there is a marathon to be run, we’ll be there as well. With all of the internal interest in running marathons, Wolfram Research created this Marathon Viewer as a sponsorship project for the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon.

Marathon Viewer website

Here are four of us, shown as dots, participating in the 2017 Illinois Marathon:

How did the above animation and the in-depth look at our performance come about? Read on to find out.

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Jesse Dohmann

Slicing Silhouettes of Jupiter: Processing JunoCam Images

January 12, 2018 — Jesse Dohmann, Strategic Development Specialist, Strategic Initiatives

Juno images processing

With the images from the Juno mission being made available to the public, I thought it might be fun to try my hand at some image processing with them. Though my background is not in image processing, the Wolfram Language has some really nice tools that lessen the learning curve, so you can focus on what you want to do vs. how to do it.

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Michael Gammon

Goodbye, 2017! It Was a Marvelous Year for Wolfram Research

January 4, 2018 — Michael Gammon, Blog Administrator, Document and Media Systems

Release features and logogram analysis

Whew! So much has happened in a year. Consider this number: we added 230 new functions to the Wolfram Language in 2017! The Wolfram Blog traces the path of our company’s technological advancement, so let’s take a look back at 2017 for the blog’s year in review.

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Kevin Daily

Spikey Bird: Creating a Flappy Bird Mod in the Wolfram Language

December 28, 2017 — Kevin Daily, Wolfram Technology Group, Team Lead

Flappy Bird and Spikey Bird

An earlier version of this post appeared on Wolfram Community, where the creation of a game interface earned the author a staff pick from the forum moderators. Be sure to head over to Wolfram Community and check out other innovative uses of the Wolfram Language!

If you like video games and you’re interested in designing them, you should know that the Wolfram Language is great at making dynamic interfaces. I’ve taken a simple game, reproduced it and modded it with ease. Yes, it’s true—interactive games are yet another avenue for creative people to use the versatile Wolfram Language to fulfill their electronic visions.

The game I’m using for this demonstration is Flappy Bird, a well-known mobile game with a simple yet captivating interactive element that has helped many people kill a lot of time. The goal of the game is to navigate a series of pipes, where each successful pass adds a point to your score. The challenge is that the character, the bird, is not so easy to control. Gravity is constantly pulling it down. You “flap” to boost yourself upward by repeatedly tapping the screen, but you must accurately time your flaps to navigate the narrow gaps between pipes.

So follow along and see what kind of graphical gaming mayhem is possible in just a few short lines of code!

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Micah Lindley

Computational Gastronomy: Using the Wolfram Language to Prepare a Sumptuous Holiday Feast

December 22, 2017 — Micah Lindley, Junior Research Programmer, Wolfram|Alpha Scientific Content

Plated meal restyled

In recent years there’s been a growing interest in the intersection of food and technology. However, many of the new technologies used in the kitchen are cooking tools and devices such as immersion circulators, silicone steam baskets and pressure ovens. Here at Wolfram, our approach has been a bit different, with a focus on providing tools that can query for, organize, visualize and compute data about food, cooking and nutrition.

Last Christmas I went home to Tucson, Arizona, to spend time with my family over the holidays. Because I studied the culinary arts and food science, I was quickly enlisted to cook Christmas dinner. There were going to be a lot of us at my parents’ house, so I was aware this would be no small task. But I curate food and nutrition data for Wolfram|Alpha, so I knew the Wolfram technology stack had some excellent resources for pulling off this big meal without a hitch.

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Michael Gammon

Creating Mathematical Gems in the Wolfram Language

December 14, 2017 — Michael Gammon, Blog Administrator, Document and Media Systems

The Wolfram Community group dedicated to visual arts is abound with technically and aesthetically stunning contributions. Many of these posts come from prolific contributor Clayton Shonkwiler, who has racked up over 75 “staff pick” accolades. Recently I got the chance to interview him and learn more about the role of the Wolfram Language in his art and creative process. But first, I asked Wolfram Community’s staff lead, Vitaliy Kaurov, what makes Shonkwiler a standout among mathematical artists.

Stereo Vision Rise Up

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