Wolfram Computation Meets Knowledge

Date Archive: 2009 May


How Do You Do That in Mathematica?

Have you ever wanted a set of straightforward, step-by-step instructions for solving a problem or accomplishing a specific task with Mathematica? Have you ever thought that a Mathematica "quick-reference guide" would be useful? If so, take a look at the "How To" Topics in Version 7. "How tos" are a new type of documentation in Mathematica 7 that provide just the information you need without a lot of detailed background information. This task-oriented approach makes these "How tos" ideal for those getting started with Mathematica. Some students, educators, researchers, and others that would benefit from using Mathematica feel that it would take too long to learn, or is just too complex to use. While this sentiment might seem reasonable given the computational power and breadth of features available in Mathematica, it couldn't be further from the truth.
Announcements & Events

7 years of NKS—and its first killer app

May 14, 2009 marks the 7th anniversary of the publication of A New Kind of Science, and it has been my tradition on these anniversaries to write a short report on the progress of NKS. It has been fascinating over the past few years to watch the progressive absorption of NKS methods and the NKS […]

Computation & Analysis

Planning a Trip? Ask Mathematica for the Itinerary.

With all the new aspects of Mathematica in Versions 6 and 7, I've enjoyed visiting universities to talk about how to use Mathematica in even more courses and research projects. Universities enjoy this, too! I am not, however, very good at thinking about the locations of universities or schools in terms of geography. Planning a trip was a seemingly endless task of cross-referencing maps and lists and notes and more lists---I'm sure you see a pattern forming here. The solution, as is often the case with me, was to use Mathematica. After finding a list of 7,000+ universities and colleges in the United States, I wrote a Mathematica program to create a list of all such schools near a particular city, complete with rough mileage and a map to use for my work.
Announcements & Events

The Spoons and the Summer School

During my stay in Champaign, Illinois at Wolfram Research headquarters last summer, I attended the 2008 Advanced Mathematica Summer School. The Summer School gives people from all over the world a chance to present their challenging problems in varied math and science fields and work with others to find solutions using Mathematica. These research topics cover a very wide range of application areas. My personal interest is in numerics, and I had the chance to work on several related projects. While at the Summer School, one of the projects I was involved in was to analytically derive a mechanism to compute the stress distribution in a circular plate with concentrated radial loadings.