[Maxima] laplace transforms in manual
macrakis at alum.mit.edu
Fri Jul 20 08:07:55 CDT 2007
> I agree that "ilt" is too cryptic. I like "laplace_inverse" better
> than "inverse_lapace" on the general principle of big-endian
> naming (i.e. most significant part of name goes first).
> Now this naming question is something I do feel more strongly
> about, and I would like to hear from others whether or not
> they support renaming ilt to laplace_inverse (or whatever).
I don't have strong feelings about naming, but I guess it would be
good to have some consistent principles. There is always a tension
between long, possibly unwieldy, names which are however clear and
explicit, and short, possibly cryptic, names which are convenient.
Maxima tends to the cryptic, which is perhaps reasonable for the most
common operations (diff, rat) but probably not for the less common
ones (cf, ilt, genfact).
Still, once you start becoming a heavy user of
rational_to_continued_fraction or inverse_laplace_transform or
generalized_factorial or even factor_polynomial, that quickly becomes
annoying. Maxima does have the "alias" function which allows defining
I am also not sure that very systematic, big-endian names, going from
most general to most specific (e.g. transform_laplace_inverse or
conversion_rational_to_continued_fraction) are going to be intuitive
or convenient for many people (military supply clerks?: Uniform, Navy,
Officer, Dress, Summer), though the principle is appealing.
Multics had an interesting naming convention, which we may want to
consider. Commands had a full name (e.g. change_working_directory,
list_directory), and then standard short forms for the *components*,
e.g. change => ch, working_directory => wdir, so that there would be
predictable short forms, something like ch_wdir, ls_dir, etc. (The
Unix commands ls, cd, etc. are a distant echo of this, but as often
with Unix, throwing out half of the good ideas so it would run on
small machines.) So we might have laplace_inv, rat_to_cf, etc. And
then there was the ultrashort form, cwd, ld (?), etc.
Just some thoughts....
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