Addi – A MATLAB clone for Android phones and tablets
Back in May 2010, The Mathworks released MATLAB Mobile which allows you to connect to a remote MATLAB session via an iPhone. I took a quick look and was less than impressed since what I REALLY wanted was the ability to run MATLAB code natively on my phone. Many other people, however, liked what The Mathworks had done but what THEY really wanted was an Android version. There is so much demand for an Android version of MATLAB Mobile that there is even a Facebook page campaigning for it. Will there ever be anything MATLABy that fully satisfies Android toting geeks such as me?
Enter Addi, an Android based MATLAB/Octave clone that has the potential to please a lot of people, including me. Based on the Java MATLAB library, JMathLib, Addi already has a lot going for it including the ability to execute .m file scripts and functions natively on your device, basic plotting (via an add-on package called AddiPlot) and the rudimentary beginnings of a toolbox system (See AddiMappingPackage). All of this is completely free and brought to us by just one man, Corbin Champion.
It works pretty well on my Samsung Galaxy S apart from the occasional glitch where I can’t see what I’m typing for short periods of time. Writing MATLAB code using the standard Android keyboard is also a bit of a pain but I believe that a custom on-screen keyboard is in the works which will hopefully improve things. As you might expect, there is only a limited subset of MATLAB commands available (essentially everything listed at http://www.jmathlib.de/docs/handbook/index.php sans the plotting functions) but there is enough to be fun and useful…just don’t expect to be able to run advanced, toolbox heavy codes straight out of the box.
Where Addi really shines, however, is on an ASUS EEE Transformer. Sadly, I don’t have one but a friend of mine let me install Addi on his and after five minutes of playing around I was in love (It even includes command history!). Some have pointed out to me that life would probably be easier with a netbook running Linux and Octave but where’s the fun in that :) To be honest, I actually find it much more fun using a limited version of MATLAB because it makes me do so much more myself rather than providing a function for every conceivable calculation…great for learning and fiddling around.
Addi is a fantastic free MATLAB clone for Android based devices that I would heartily recommend to all MATLAB fans. Get it, try it and let me know what you think :)