Computer Algebra System

I am stuying physics by myself and I would like to get a Computer Algebra System. Does anybody has any suggestions?
 
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How about Freemat or Octave or Julia. These can do vector and matrix operations quite well and all are free, free free free.

How about the anaconda distribution of python with numpy scipy sympy matplotlib and pandas great for numerical work like machine learning.

Mathematica can do symbolic math and so can python with sympy. Im not sure about how well julia works with symbolic math though.
 
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I like Mathematica for paid CAS and SageMath for free.
 
Thank you for your responses. How good is the CAS included in my TI-89 Titanium calculator?
 
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I have never used it, but I can’t imagine that it could be very good given the hardware limitations.
 
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Here’s a brief comparative of ti899 vs Mathematica and the audiences who use them

 
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Also PocketCAS is available for ipad as is Sagemath



 
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Thanks all of you for your answers. Dale, do you know how can I learn to use FreeMat?
 
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I think you probably meant to ask @jedishrfu instead of me. I have never used it. I generally just read the documentation for other software.
 
I think you probably meant to ask @jedishrfu instead of me. I have never used it. I generally just read the documentation for other software.
Dale, you are right. I actually tried to install SageMath into my computer, but my computer prevented me from doing it. So then I tried to install FreeMat. Do you know why my computer doesn't let me install SageMath?
 
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No, I don’t. I was able to install it on my home computer but not my work computer. I assumed that it was due to some security configuration on my work computer. My IT people are a little overbearing.
 
No, I don’t. I was able to install it on my home computer but not my work computer. I assumed that it was due to some security configuration on my work computer. My IT people are a little overbearing.
Do you suggest me to learn Mathematica in order to learn more advanced physics?
 
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If you can buy it, then it is an awesome tool. I have used it since 1996, and it greatly aided my physics learning.
 
How about Freemat or Octave or Julia. These can do vector and matrix operations quite well and all are free, free free free.

How about the anaconda distribution of python with numpy scipy sympy matplotlib and pandas great for numerical work like machine learning.

Mathematica can do symbolic math and so can python with sympy. Im not sure about how well julia works with symbolic math though.
Do you have any idea of how to learn FreeMat? When I click on "Online Manual", the program closes.
 
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Do you have any idea of how to learn FreeMat? When I click on "Online Manual", the program closes.




 
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Try typing help and the function you want help on in the commands panel.

If not then one of the manuals above may help.
 
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Do you have any idea of how to learn FreeMat? When I click on "Online Manual", the program closes.
As @Dale said it may be some internet configuration. Perhaps your os is protecting you from whatever site or file that freemat is trying to access.
 
Mathematica won't teach you advanced physics, it is a tool to do calculations.
Ok, I understand that. Do physics majors learn it to perform physics calculations?
 

wle

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I am stuying physics by myself and I would like to get a Computer Algebra System. Does anybody has any suggestions?
You can try Maxima, if you want to try a free one.


How about Freemat or Octave or Julia.
These aren't computer algebra systems.

Julia is also relatively new and I have doubts about its stability. I've used it and I've had issues with e.g. code I wrote a few years ago no longer working because the version got upgraded in the intervening years and they changed things in a way that broke backward compatibility. I had similar problems a few years ago because the versions of Julia I had installed on my home and work computers at the time were different. I like what Julia is trying to do but this is the main reason I don't recommend it, especially for beginners, at least for now. Julia passed version 1.0 recently though so maybe this will change in the future.
 

Dr Transport

Science Advisor
Gold Member
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Ok, I understand that. Do physics majors learn it to perform physics calculations?
They do, but it is a steep learning curve. I do not know it and I am a fairly successful theoretical physicist. I'm not an advocate of using computer algebra systems as an undergraduutel because I am an advocate of repetition is the best learning tool, unless it is directly needed for a specific class.
 
Ok, so do you suggest to first focus on the physics and then try CAS later on?
 
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You can try Maxima, if you want to try a free one.




These aren't computer algebra systems.

Julia is also relatively new and I have doubts about its stability. I've used it and I've had issues with e.g. code I wrote a few years ago no longer working because the version got upgraded in the intervening years and they changed things in a way that broke backward compatibility. I had similar problems a few years ago because the versions of Julia I had installed on my home and work computers at the time were different. I like what Julia is trying to do but this is the main reason I don't recommend it, especially for beginners, at least for now. Julia passed version 1.0 recently though so maybe this will change in the future.
To be fair though that was when Julia was in prerelease mode ie before v1.0 and they said things would change as it evolves. Scalia was always the more problematic one as things would change between point releases causing to tighten up their code some more.
 
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You’re looking at it all wrong. You learn physics by doing physics problems. The Cas system is completely optional but if you have it you can get your results faster if you know how to use the CAS system effectively. CAS is more like lab equipment that something that will magically teach you physics that you don’t already know.
 

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