A Month of Math Software – November 2012
Since I am writing this article while on a train it seems only fitting that I say ‘Welcome to the slightly delayed November edition of a Month of Math software, the latest in a series of posts that have been going for almost two years‘ If you have any news for the final edition of 2012 feel free to contact me to tell me all about it.
- After a two year wait, version 9 of Mathematica is now available. There are 400 new functions in areas such as Time Series, Stochastic Differential Equations, Markov Chains, Survival Analysis and Reliability Analysis. There’s also built in integration with R, 3D Volumetric image processing, enhanced control system support and much more. More details on what’s new in 9 can be found at http://www.wolfram.co.uk/mathematica/new-in-9/.
- Version 4.2 of Geogebra is now available. See http://blog.geogebra.org/2012/11/4-2-release-candidate/ for the new stuff. One of the most exciting new developments is the new Computer Algebra System (CAS) view.
- Version 5.4.1 of Sage, the free alternative to Mathematica,Maple,Magma and MATLAB and been released. See http://www.sagemath.org/mirror/src/changelogs/sage-5.4.1.txt for what’s new.
- A minor upgrade to Maple has been released. The enhancements available in 16.02 are detailed at http://www.maplesoft.com/support/downloads/m16_02update.aspx
- The Fast Library for Number Theory, FLINT, was updated to version 2.3 on November 9th. See what’s new in this C library by taking a look at the NEWS file.
- MAGMA is a GPU accelerated linear algebra library from the Innovative Computing Laboratory (ICL) at the University of Tennessee. According to the release announcement, version 1.3 of the library includes some performance improvements and support for the new NVIDIA-Kepler GPUs.
- PLASMA is another linear algebra library from the people at ICL and it too has seen a new release. Version 2.5.0 Beta 1 contains a couple of new algorithms, bug fixes and performance enhancements–check out the release announcement for the details. A nice paper that explains the differences between PLASMA and Magma is available at http://icl.cs.utk.edu/news_pub/submissions/plasma-scidac09.pdf
- The HSL library is ‘a collection of state-of-the-art packages for large-scale scientific computation written and developed by the Numerical Analysis Group at the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory’ It saw a few updates throughout November – see the project’s change log for details.
- SoftMaker have released their office suite for Android devices and my first impressions are that it blows the competition out of the water. Although the Word and Powerpoint alternatives are fine, the app that might be of most interest to readers of this article is, of course, the spreadsheet app, PlanMaker. This initial release includes over 330 calculation functions and has support for complex numbers, arrays and 3d charts.
- MathStudio, one of the best mathematical apps for mobile devices has been updated to version 5.4.Other than adding suport for iOS 6 and iPhone 5 I have no idea what’s new since the release annoucement is rather sparse.
Bits and pieces
- The commercial computer algebra system, Magma, is now at version 2.18-11. See what’s new at http://magma.maths.usyd.edu.au/magma/releasenotes/2/18/12/
- The free open-source linear algebra library ViennaCL is now available in version 1.4.0. In addition to the OpenCL-based computing backend, the new release now also provides a CUDA- and an OpenMP-backend. Most noteworthy among the many new features and updates are the improved performance of ILU preconditioners including optional GPU-acceleration using level-scheduling, the incomplete Cholesky factorization preconditioner, a mixed-precision conjugate gradient solver, and further increased API compatibility with Boost.uBLAS.