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Re: [axiom] Octave/Axiom

From: Joris van der Hoeven
Subject: Re: [axiom] Octave/Axiom
Date: Sat, 6 Apr 2002 13:29:26 -0600

On Sat, 6 Apr 2002, Paul Kienzle wrote:

> We have the octave-forge project for community contributions at
> We could certainly host a TeXmacs interface there.  I presume you are
> contemplating replacing the octave console with something driven by
> TeXmacs.  Rather than embedding TeXmacs in Octave or vice versa it might
> make more sense using IPC.  

We currently implemented two ways to connect extern systems:
pipes and dynamic libraires. For a first implementation,
I recommend the pipes; you may look at the "mycas" example
in order to find out how that works. Don't hesitate to contact
Andrey Grozin or me if you need more help.

> Kevin Straight is working on a spreadsheet front end using Octave as a
> compute engine.  His project is at
> I can't check how he is doing the communication because his site isn't
> responding.  

I actually have the project of writing a universal spreadsheet
inside  TeXmacs, which will rely on extern systems for all computations,
but which will do the rendering and dependence analysis in a very good way.
Instead of writing a dozen of different spreadsheet interfaces
(the giac developer Parisse has been working on such a tool too),
why not write one really good one? If Kevin Straight has just started
working on this, maybe you could suggest him to write such a tool
directly in TeXmacs?

> There is a matlab-like engine interface in octave-forge/extra/engine
> --- do it right and you can interface to matlab with a simple re-link.  I'm
> going to work on a DDE version of the engine interface RSN so that I can
> use it under windows.
> Please tell us what you have in mind.  Are you thinking something along the
> lines of a Mathematica notebook?  I have to say that Octave would not seem
> to benefit greatly from it, other than in the display of the help pages.
> And maybe prettier display of polynomials.  Octave has at this point very
> weak symbolic support (available in octave-forge courtesy of Ben Sapp
> <address@hidden>), which is where I can see the most benefit from
> math markup.

We have in mind something evolutive. At a first implementation,
one may limit oneself to mathematical formulas (polynomials, matrices, etc.)
and documentation. We also support postscript output. But TeXmacs evolves.
Next on the list are the implementation of the universal spreadsheet
mentioned above, blackboxes in order to let extern applications draw
graphics inside TeXmacs, folding and unfolding, a communication protocol
for giving formulas the write semantics for inter-cas communication, etc.
If you have a good working TeXmacs interface (one or two days of work),
then you will benefit from all this, without much additional effort.
Also, TeXmacs is very customizable via the Guile/Scheme extension language.
Hence, you may program an "Octave mode", like you would do in Emacs,
with special keyboard shortcuts, menus and other tricks.

> The best place to discuss this further is address@hidden

I thereby cc the message to that place.

Best wishes, Joris

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