For questions regarding the underlying implementation of built-in functions.

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22
votes
3answers
409 views

Efficiently appending points to a NearestFunction

I have a program which works with a list of points (in 3D, but it could be in 1D as well, it won't make a difference). Within a loop, it keeps adding new points to the list. To calculate the ...
7
votes
1answer
324 views

What algorithm is Mathematica 9 using for “SpectralEmbedding” of graphs?

When I specify that a graph should be realized using the "SpectralEmbedding" procedure, what paper / algorithm for spectral embedding is this based on? I was unable to find any documentation for ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Implementation of Decompose

I'm curious as to how Decompose works so I decided to use Trace with the option ...
9
votes
1answer
307 views

What algorithm does Plot use to determine abscissas?

(I'm hoping this question is not hopelessly naive...) My understanding is that Plot's strategy is to generate a list of abscissas, evaluate the argument expression ...
9
votes
2answers
450 views

How to interpret the FullForm of a SparseArray?

SparseArrays are atomic objects, but they do have a FullForm which reveals information about them. What is the meaning of the ...
5
votes
3answers
285 views

How could I implement the equivalent of NextPrime

I would like to know what an implementation of the function NextPrime would look like if it were implemented in Mathematica's core language.
22
votes
2answers
502 views

How to implement FittedModel like objects

In the course of making some RLink wrappers I want to have some richer containers like Mathematica does with its FittedModel ...
15
votes
2answers
481 views

Why does iterating Prime in reverse order require much more time?

Say I would like to display the $10$ greatest primes that are less than $10^5$. I could do the following: ...
5
votes
2answers
531 views

Any ideas on how GeneralMiniMaxApproximation is implemented?

GeneralMiniMaxApproximation is used to construct minimax approximations of parametrically defined functions. I am curious about how ...
30
votes
1answer
780 views

What calendar is Mathematica using for dates in the distant past?

It appears that Mathematica treats all dates as proleptic Gregorian dates by default, a hypothesis that can be easily tested by using AbsoluteTime to compute the ...
21
votes
2answers
881 views

How to retrieve the parameters calculated and used by ImageAdjust?

When ImageAdjust is called with an image, i.e. with one parameter, it returns an automatically adjusted Image. I would like to ...
10
votes
1answer
183 views

Algorithm used by IsomorphicGraphQ

I'd like to know which algorithm is used to test if two graphs are isomorphic?
2
votes
0answers
161 views

PowersRepresentations Algorithm

I'm trying to understand the mathematics behind counting the number of representations of a positive integer by $n$ distinct $k$th powers, i.e. I would really like to know how to do the Mathematica ...
9
votes
0answers
660 views

Does Mathematica use the Elliptic Curve Method (ECM) in FactorInteger[]?

I'm not a mathematician, and I'm not even going to pretend that I understand anything of the ECM. But I know it can be a fast method for factorization. I benchmarked the factorization of ...
9
votes
1answer
122 views

What is the simplest way to determine which call to a superfunction has generated a Message?

I have a complicated function which contains many calls to NIntegrate, NSolve, FindRoot and ...
7
votes
1answer
786 views

The difference between “SymbolicProcessing” -> 0 and restricting the function definition to numeric values only

The Documentation tells us that there are two ways to disable symbolic processing of the integrand by the NIntegrate function when it is known that it just slows ...
4
votes
2answers
344 views

Implementation of builtin function Fold

In the documentation for fold, it says Fold[f,x,list] gives the last element of FoldList[f,x,list]. But this is surely not the way it is implemented, right? ...
3
votes
2answers
217 views

How does RootOfUnityQ work?

How does Mathematica's RootOfUnityQ function work? That is, how does Mathematica know if a number is a root of unity? Example: Let $x = \frac{1-i \sqrt{2+\sqrt{5}}}{1+i \sqrt{2+\sqrt{5}}}$. Then ...
3
votes
2answers
234 views

What does MinimalPolynomial do?

suppose $x^5-x-1=0$, $y^7-y-1=0$ and $z=x+y$. I want to find a minimal polynomial expression of $z$, such that $p(z)=0$, and the code can be written like this: ...
16
votes
1answer
442 views

What does “suitable for symbolic manipulation” in the documentation mean?

This question is related to this other one I posted on Stack Overflow some time ago. There, in a beautiful answer, acl (with some unhumble editing done by me) showed that the derivative of ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

How does Mathematica integrate?

Basically, this question can be considered to be an extenstion to my other question. What I wanted to do was this integral as homework (it is indefinite BTW so no approximations using Simpson's Rule ...
5
votes
1answer
256 views

Can we know the background code associated with basic mathematica functions

I wanted to know how computers calculate basic functions like Sqrt so first I checked how humans do it I found that they use something called "Newton's method" that ...
34
votes
2answers
5k views

How does Interpolation really work?

I'm looking for some explanation or advice, not help in solving something. Recently I finished my program and my supervisor said "Ok, now it's time for your first paper: write a scientific text about ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

What method does NDSolve use for solving PDEs?

What is NDSolve's mode of operation? I use it to solve partial differential equations and never gave it too much thought. Recently, I came across this question. ...
66
votes
6answers
3k views

What is the most convenient way to read definitions of in-memory symbols when we don't have the source files? (Spelunking tools)

Note: I put Simon's implementation on GitHub. Contributions welcome! When trying to read the definition of already defined (package or built-in) symbols using ...
29
votes
1answer
681 views

How are MemberQ and FreeQ so fast?

I would like to understand the implementation that allows MemberQ and FreeQ to be as fast as they are. I noticed this thanks to ...
8
votes
1answer
332 views

How to check for Mathematica’s definition of XY?

The question is: Can I ask the Mathematica kernel directly what it takes as the definition of the built-in symbol XY? After all this has to be in the kernel. And if the documentation is not giving any ...
43
votes
3answers
3k views

How to find out which method Mathematica selected?

There are commands like NonlinearModelFit[] or NDSolve[] that have the option Method it ...
29
votes
2answers
1k views

How does Plot work?

I considered the following function: sin[x_] := Module[{}, Print["x=", x]; Sin[x] ] in Mathematica. Next, I tried to plot it using: ...
12
votes
2answers
784 views

How does Mathematica determine that an evaluation should be terminated?

How exactly does Mathematica determine that evaluation of particular expression should be finished and the result should be returned? Here are some examples of unclear behavior which have arisen, ...