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Old 05-24-2004, 09:20 AM   #1
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Best language for numerical problem solving?


I'm a chemical engineer and I think that gaining some skills in process modelling and solving numerical methods will be quite helpful to me. I only intend to learn as a hobby, but I figure it'll be a hobby with potential to be very useful to my line of work.

I'd like to know your opinions on which programming language will best suite my needs. I'm interested in being able to simulate industrial processes based on scientifically determined formulas. Often these are differential equations which cannot be solved without the use of numerical methods and iterative techniques. Manipulating matrix functions also comes into it a bit.

I've got a little experience with MATLAB from Mathworks, which is a fairly decent sort of tool for these kinds of applications. What else is available/recommended?

Old 05-24-2004, 02:03 PM   #2
jim mcnamara
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are the two top choices as they are by far the most general. If you go to you will find modeling tools that are specific to certain types of problems. It has a search engine associated with the site.

Basically, unix tools are built with this idea: do only one thing, do it well.
Jack-of-all-trade products like Maple and Mathematica (matlab kind of fits here) are not very common in the unix world.
Old 05-25-2004, 12:17 PM   #3
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You could also look at:

octave and R
Old 05-26-2004, 02:11 AM   #4
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Thanks for your help

I think I'm going to go for octave since it's similar enough to MATLAB for me to pick it up quite fast


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