[Maxima] questions maxima ask
fateman at cs.berkeley.edu
Wed May 28 09:32:40 CDT 2008
This happens with integration using the "asksign" program, most of the time.
It has been raised many times. There are technical difficulties doing this,
and whether it is a good idea or not is unclear. You can probably find more
discussion of this in this mailing list. Here are some thought why it is
not easy to solve.
For example you can see something like this:
Is n >0? yes or no
if you answer no, Maxima will ask
Is n+1>0? yes or no
if you answer no again, Maxima will ask
Is n+2>0 yes or no.
Initially one concern was that pursuing all branches would lead to an
enormous and largely irrelevant computation, and in the days of 1.2
megabytecomputer memory, the result would not be computed because of a lack
With more resources, you might argue we could pursue more branches, but with
multiple questions you get an exponential explosion.
On the other hand, sometimes maxima asks a question and then it turns out,
sometime later, that the question is irrelevant, since either answer leads
to the same result.
And (in my opinion, worse) it ask a very complicated question that you don't
know the answer to at all!
The contention, sometimes made here, that Maxima simply should not ask any
questions, is problematical. Mathematica does this, and it simply gives
answers that are sometimes wrong: they ignore singularities, for example.
Now you may thing that singularities are itty bitty points not worth
worrying about, but in fact if the answer involves 3 parameters,
singularities may be entire subspaces of 2 parameters, not a point but a
surface where the answer is wrong...
From: maxima-bounces at math.utexas.edu [mailto:maxima-bounces at math.utexas.edu]
On Behalf Of ahmet alper parker
Sent: Wednesday, May 28, 2008 3:18 AM
To: maxima at math.utexas.edu
Subject: [Maxima] questions maxima ask
Sometimes maxima asks questions about your variables whether they are
greater than zero or etc. Then, it answers your question as your data. Is
there a way to make maxima give all the results for different values and
combinations of variables at the same time? If yes how? If no, would not it
be a good feature to implement?
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