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Maple math software?

  1. Jul 13, 2018 #1
    I was just wondering how many of you had heard about the Math “programming” software called “Maple” and if so, what your opinion is on it compared to like Matlab or Mathematica and the other mainstream languages?

    Is such a “low-key” software/language learning extensively?

    I personally find it extremely user friendly and easy to use, but I never see it being recommended on any sites or see it in general anywhere else?

    My school uses it a lot for physics.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 13, 2018 #2


    Staff: Mentor

  4. Jul 13, 2018 #3
    I use Maple a lot, and the ability to do both symbolic and numerical work in the same file is invaluable to me. It has been around quite a long time and is well known in certain circles. I find it much easier to use than Mathematica.
  5. Jul 13, 2018 #4


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    I'll just flag that every single one of these is a closed source language where one pays for user license. How much you hear about such a thing is in part related to advertising budgets, and how much is paid to partner with universities on projects, as well as language preferences of bigwigs in given university departments. There's something of a feedback loop into some industry jobs from here.

    In the open source world, there aren't really those kind of advertising and other budgets. Sage is probably the only open source alternative to Mathematica and Maple that I'm aware of. (Sage syntax is close to Python so that helps... I had mastering Sage as one of my priorities for this year but, well, my priorities got altered a bit. )

    There's lots of Matlab alternatives though it is quite popular, still, for some reason.

    - - - -
    Btw, there are some helpers in the HW forums who use Maple for real nasty calculations -- take a look through some of the threads. Sometimes people accidentally ask bizarrely difficult questions that need a Groebner basis or whatever.
  6. Jul 13, 2018 #5


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    These companies offer student discounts. In the case of Matlab, the discount is staggeringly, absolutely, huge.
  7. Jul 15, 2018 #6


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    I use Maple a lot for symbolic calculations and sometimes as a tool for code generation. In my field it is more prevalent than Mathematica.

    MATLAB and Maple can interact with each other. In particular, MATLAB can use Maple as an engine for symbolic computations.

    I also have experience using SymPy - a Python library for symbolic mathematics that I believe is incorporated into Sage. SymPy is a very nice project and also very usable for basic work, but I found it a bit clumsy for more advanced problems and not so well documented.

    Since you wrote that your school uses Maple a lot and you enjoy using it yourself, I do not see any reason for not adopting it, other than an objection someone may have against using commercial software. (You can inspect the code of Maple's library procedures, if you wish.)
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