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Re: Who uses Octave?

From: pathematica
Subject: Re: Who uses Octave?
Date: Tue, 7 Feb 2012 11:26:31 -0800 (PST)

I work in Pathology in the UK.
I was taught the use of Mathcad by the Open University (UK) during the
standard maths degree.
I was also taught the use of a variety of proprietary statistical software
I was disappointed that the OU did not use open source programs such as
I have subsequently been striving to transfer the skills I learned in
mathematics to open source equivalents. I consider that Octave is the most
useful of these and the one I use the most. 
I participated in the recent on line course on Machine Learning offered by
Professor Andrew Ng of Stanford University, which used Octave. This markedly
increased my familiarity with Octave and insight into the best way to use
it. I believe Jordi also participated in this course. 

I have used Octave to manipulate data for various audits in Pathology, which
used non-standard statistical methods. 
Although it is not my main job, I have used Octave to produce various plots
on the hoof (typically three dimensional ones using the Gnuplot backend so
that they might be rotated to allow viewing from various directions) from
instructive specimen datasets to support lectures that I have given on
aspects of statistics to medical researchers. 
I have only recently reached a position from which I might use Octave for
more basic research. I aspire to use it to model fluid flow in certain
hearts. I expect that I might find this difficult and I cannot guarantee
that I will be in a position to report that I achieved this when this
question is asked again :-)

>From the perspective of general uptake of Octave, commercial software has
the advantage that it is often used in university courses. I note that
Octave was originally developed to support a particular university course in
Chemistry. While it is not in general use by universities such as the Open
University, it will remain at a disadvantage compared with those that are
taught. I see this as a bigger problem than the lack of a fancy GUI
interface. The recent initiative by Stanford University was a welcome one to
address this problem. In particular, it provided me with greater insight in
how to structure scripts, which was similar to what I was doing, but much
better organised.

As noted by others, for those that are familiary with the use of scripts, a
GUI is either unnecessary or even unwanted. 

As normal thread discourage the expression of thanks, I would like to take
the opportunity in this one to thank the originators and the developers of
this fantastic software.

However good you think Octave is, it's much, much better.
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