[Maxima] New Maxima
asau at inbox.ru
Wed Oct 29 00:21:25 CDT 2008
Žiga Lenarčič <ziga.lenarcic at gmail.com> writes:
> I like maxima very much - I prefer it's standard sin(x) over
> mathematica's Sin[x]. I've done some scientific work on maxima
> (combined with wxmaxima), but using maxima for solving a problem
> takes an awful lot of time. Maxima userbase would grow significantly
> if someone would make a new usable! integrated Maxima II system with
> folowing features:
> - Notebook interface, similar to Mathematica - using wxmaxima for the
I strongly oppose to GUI, because it interacts very bad with other tools.
> - one integrated package to download for any system including the
> core (maxima), the gui (wxmaxima) and the plotter (gnuplot).
I strongly oppose to "integrated" package, because things eventually go
messy way and it is very hard to fix bad behaviour, even if you find it.
> - needed improvements to wxmaxima:
> * 2D mathematical input
> * editable plots (replotting via gnuplot when user for instance turn
> on the gridlines)
> * saving plots as pdfs
> * loose the input line, write directly into the notebook (white
> paper system)
Again, I don't care for wxMaxima. TeXmacs looks better.
> The user spends most of the time figuring out strange maxima's quirks
> and inconsistencies, functions with strange names. Most potential
> users don't want to deal with downloading maxima and it's gui
> wxmaxima separately. The command line maxima makes the user feel like
> it's some ancient DOS program and inherently inferior to Mathematica
> or any other CAS. Until Maxima isn't packaged into one application
> with a proper gui and proper help it won't get any use from anyone
> but the most hardcore geeks and old strange mathematical profesors.
> Implementing a proper help, gui and consistent functions with
> noncryptic names is much more inportant than implementing new
> functions for some obscure mathematical uses and fixing some special
> buggy integral. That's the truth.
I don't see how wxMaxima matters.
First, potential users don't deal with downloading them at all,
sane users use package management system, which deals pretty nice with
the task of downloading consistent versions of all required software.
Same for other packaging issues. I believe you don't understand how the
stuff works. Embedding any external tool into the distribution makes it
hard to fix respective bugs. Consider famous autoconf/automake and
libtool, the tools which generally fail to do the work they're made for.
Second, not all potential users are fond of WIMP interface.
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