[FoRK] Octave (Matlab), R (S), Python, etc., Re: Raspberry Pi + Qt5 + OpenGL = awesome

Stephen D. Williams sdw at lig.net
Fri Apr 12 01:31:24 PDT 2013

Sage and Orange look interesting.

> *Sage* is a free open-source <http://hg.sagemath.org/> mathematics software system licensed under the GPL. It combines the power 
> <http://www.sagemath.org/tour.html> of many existing open-source packages <http://www.sagemath.org/links-components.html> into a 
> common Python-based interface.
> Mission: /Creating a viable free open source alternative to Magma, Maple, Mathematica and Matlab/.
> Sage is built out of nearly 100 open-source packages <http://www.sagemath.org/links-components.html> and features a unified 
> interface. Sage can be used to study elementary and advanced, pure and applied mathematics. This includes a huge range of 
> mathematics, including basic algebra, calculus, elementary to very advanced number theory, cryptography, numerical computation, 
> commutative algebra, group theory, combinatorics, graph theory, exact linear algebra and much more. It combines various software 
> packages <http://www.sagemath.org/links-components.html> and seamlessly integrates their functionality into a common experience. 
> It is well-suited <http://www.sagemath.org/library-stories.html> for education and research. 

And to be a little more complete:
Scilab http://www.scilab.org/
ROOT http://root.cern.ch/drupal/

What CERN uses:


On 4/12/13 1:05 AM, Stephen D. Williams wrote:
> On 4/11/13 11:10 PM, Joseph S. Barrera III wrote:
>> On 4/11/2013 10:01 PM, Stephen D. Williams wrote:
>> > Since a lot of the interesting machine learning is done with Matlab/Octave now, I'm trying to imagine that much Lisp doing 
>> similar things...
>> > I know about the early stuff, Mycin etc.  But there is a big gray goo period that I'm glad I skipped over, or rather skimmed 
>> through, jumping to the recent good parts.
>> This is a big area of ignorance for me.
>> Most of what I know of Matlab is:
>> 1. We keep trying to get the scientists at SLAC/LCLS to use (free) Python/scipy/matplotlib/etc... instead of Matlab but they won't.
> My sense was that I'd want to see a concise equivalence to each key feature of Matlab / Octave.  The concise syntax becomes an 
> algebra that you think in, so using Python instead is a bit disruptive; perhaps OK if it were easy to see equivalence.
> The most surprising thing about Matlab was a kind of free, implicit polymorphism where you could create functions that did complex 
> operations where the function would work on a wide range of forms of input.  I should dig up the exact example from a machine 
> learning solution, but it was something that would have taken a lot of alternative code in Python or Java most likely.
> Matlab is a pain:
> https://abandonmatlab.wordpress.com/2009/07/
> Why isn't there an .m syntax parser for Python?
> I wonder how well this works?
> https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2644618/
> http://ompc.juricap.com/
> Rats:
>> The stage of the development still doesn't allow you to use it as a replacement for MATLAB(R). 
> Perhaps this works:
> http://chiselapp.com/user/victorlei/repository/smop-dev/wiki?name=SMOP+--+Matlab+to+Python+compiler
> SLAC should have a Summer of Code project for this...
> Or merge Octave and Python somehow.  Perhaps:
> https://pypi.python.org/pypi/oct2py
> Seems like SciPy only loads .m data:
> http://docs.scipy.org/doc/scipy/reference/generated/scipy.io.loadmat.html
> Recently, I wanted to do some Python scripting on MacOSX and was very surprised to find out how disjoint and annoying it was to 
> get a newer version of Python installed and be able to easily install Python libraries that would be available for scripts.  I 
> tried several published mechanisms and finally gave up, just setting the python path to the directories of the libraries.  Seems 
> like it is only solved for Linux plus Windows with a commercial distribution.  Disappointing.
>> 2. We have tried getting the scientists to use Octave instead of Matlab but like no way.
> Probably: There's some UI and other capabilities that aren't there on Octave.  And maybe not trusting that it is as accurate, bug 
> free, etc.
>> 3. I think my son uses Octave at UC Davis as a Matlab replacement with workable results. (He's subscribed to this list but I 
>> don't know how much he reads it.)
>> I'd love to know what is so compelling about Matlab that so many scientists won't switch over to (what to me is the dead-easy to 
>> use) Python + tools.
>> I don't actually know how I ended up here. I started off as a kernel hacker, writing drivers and other interrupt-savy code, 
>> including assembly when needed. Now I'm like 14 levels of abstraction above that. Hell, I'm even writing web stuff now, which 
>> (deep down) just doesn't seem nearly as hard core as writing device drivers. What a long strange trip it's been. If I'm still 
>> programming at 65, I'll probably just actually be advising robots how to improve the UIs they write and how to write more 
>> human-readable code. Er, robot-readable.
> We were discussing today how to debug a gpio driven reset line problem for our camera on the new chipset with the new kernel version.
>> - Joe 
> sdw

Stephen D. Williams sdw at lig.net stephendwilliams at gmail.com LinkedIn: http://sdw.st/in
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