Tuesday, May 22, 2007

S-Plus 8 emerges from Beta

Back in April 2006, I wrote about S-Plus 8 going to public Beta and predicted therefore that it would be out in Q4 2006.

Well it has finally appeared in May 2007. With such a long release cycle one might expect dramatic changes, but the new features list is largely as I described a year ago:

- Improvements to the Eclipse based Workbench (debugging and profiling)
- New graphic enhancements
- A new package mechanism
- "Over 100 new functions" in the S language

Since there is no information on their site about exactly what is in any of these changes, I can say no more!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Mathematica 6 released

Wolfram Research have released a new version of Mathematica with the claim that "Mathematica's been reinvented."

This is certainly a huge upgrade with around 500 items on the new features summary, all of which (from a quick scan) appear to have substance.

To get a sense of the major directions, you are better off with the marketing version which summarises the most exciting things on the interface side as new application building tools with a free "Mathematica Player" which is some kind of runtime version. Depending on the details, this may be important for deploying tools developed in Mathematica.

On computation, the most important seem to be related to data (I/O, and built in data sources), and new optimization tools.

There is a lot of new visualization stuff which seems to cross over from computational features to interface features.