How many MATLAB toolboxes make a Mathematica 8?

November 18th, 2010 | Categories: math software, mathematica, matlab | Tags:

Out of curiosity I wondered how many MATLAB toolboxes I’d need to buy in order to get similar functionality to Mathematica 8.  I’m not claiming that Mathematica has all of the functionality in these toolboxes since it clearly doesn’t.  Additionally, there are many MATLAB toolboxes for which Mathematica has no equivalent at all.  With that said – I think that Mathematica 8 has functionality equivalent to at least some functions in the following MATLAB toolboxes.

  • Symbolic toolbox
  • Parallel Computing toolbox
  • Optimization toolbox
  • Statistics toolbox
  • Image processing toolbox
  • Curve fitting toolbox
  • Control systems toolbox
  • Wavelet toolbox
  • Finance toolbox

Any I’ve missed?

  1. November 18th, 2010 at 02:43
    Reply | Quote | #1

    Maybe Fixed Point toolbox? (with $Pre = SetPrecision[#, 5] &)

  2. November 18th, 2010 at 10:01
    Reply | Quote | #2

    On the face of it I guess so but surely there is more to the fixed point toolbox than that?! I’ll take a look at the FP MATLAB demos sometime. If I can complete any one of them using Mathematica then I’ll add it to the list.

  3. Pete
    November 18th, 2010 at 13:50
    Reply | Quote | #3

    Global Optimization Toolbox
    Database Toolbox

    Looks like version 8 has added:
    Image Acquisition Toolbox
    MATLAB Compiler

    Perhaps these too?
    Financial Derivatives Toolbox
    Datafeed Toolbox

  4. November 24th, 2010 at 07:22
    Reply | Quote | #4

    ComputerArithmetic package is probably more aligned with FixedPoint than SetPrecision

  5. Mark Havryliv
    November 28th, 2010 at 03:44
    Reply | Quote | #5

    I’ve just been playing with the wavelet functions after using Matlab for wavelets this year; the Mathematica solution is considerably more elegant, particularly the integrated visualisations.

    P.s. love your blog.

  6. Eric
    December 4th, 2010 at 12:00
    Reply | Quote | #6

    Is there any limitation on how many queries you can send to wolfram|alpha within Mathematica 8? I’ve read some post on the net that said so.

  7. Nasser M. Abbasi
    December 5th, 2010 at 02:45
    Reply | Quote | #7


    I do not see such a limit anywhere in the settings.

    Where did you read that? It does not make much sense to be a limit. How will this limit be measured? per session? one can always restart new Mathematica session, per notebook? one can always start a new notebook. Since time PC was booted? one can always reboot.

    I think WRI would like more people to use W|Alpha, not less, so putting a limit seems counter productive.

    I find the linguistic interface to be an efficient way to help one learn Mathematica commands.

    I can say type something in English, and see what the Mathematica command looks like. Better than browsing through documentation and the net looking for examples.

    But sometimes, W|Alpha does not understand the command typed, and a response comes back which has no relation to what one wanted. But that is ok, with time, I am sure this will improve.

    Also, need to be careful with the English syntax. For example, I typed

    “plot sin xy”

    I got back

    Plot3D[Sin[x*y], {x, -Sqrt[3*Pi], Sqrt[3*Pi]}, {y, -Sqrt[3*Pi], Sqrt[3*Pi]}]

    But when I typed

    “plot sin x y”

    I got back

    Plot3D[y*Sin[x], {x, -2*Pi, 2*Pi}, {y, -1, 1}]

    But overall, a very nice way to learn Mathematica commands.


  8. Mark Havryliv
    December 5th, 2010 at 12:29
    Reply | Quote | #8

    @Nasser M. Abbasi
    I struck a limit today, and was directed to a site ( containing the following remarks:
    “The WolframAlpha function is limited to 1,000 API calls per day for professional Premier Service subscribers (500 API calls per day for student and classroom Premier Service subscribers), and 100 API calls per day for all other users, unless an API upgrade is purchased.”

  9. Eric
    December 5th, 2010 at 13:27
    Reply | Quote | #9

    @Nasser M. Abbasi
    As what Mark quoted in his comment, I think that’s what I read from the blog post.
    Maybe WRI think wolfram|alpha will be overloaded if there’s no limitation?