Questions on correct (or improved) formulation of Mathematica code to achieve particular results. Use this tag (not "symbol") for questions about all those odd @@ /@ # & and ~ characters.

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3
votes
1answer
117 views

Differentiating a Dot Product

I apologize if this type of question has been asked before, but a preliminary search turned up nothing. I would like to differentiate dot products. For example, consider taking a derivative with ...
0
votes
2answers
125 views

How to display output as symbols?

I have this piece of code which populates a matrix following different rules depending on row and column number: ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Why is ^^ff not the same as ^^ToExpression[“ff”]?

I want to convert a hexadecimal string to a decimal (base 10) number: 16^^ff 16^^ToExpression["ff"] The 1st line returns the correct answer of 255, while the 2nd ...
0
votes
1answer
120 views

Holding Input Windows

I am creating a Mathematica document which contains a list of proofs in various fields of Mathematics so that I can easily review whenever I would like. First, I create a large set I call 'proofs' ...
2
votes
2answers
107 views

Return only one numeric solution to equation [duplicate]

Consider a simple plane equation 2x-3y+4z==7 I just want some position vector on that plane. For example, {7/2,0,0} would be ...
1
vote
1answer
220 views

Looping with NDSolve?

I have a series of PDE equations that are solved with NDSolve for certain variables $a$ and $b$ - Now, I want to see the output at a time $t$ as $a$ and $b$ change; so I was thinking of a loop ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How to reverse the direction of the y axes

I have a similar question to this one. Unfortunately, the answers there didn't help me. I would like to plot a simple function with the normal Plot function. ...
0
votes
1answer
172 views

Please explain this code (contains Append, Do, Coefficient)

I am a graduate student using a past student's Mathematica program. Will someone please explain to me exactly what this piece of code is doing? Specifically the ...
4
votes
1answer
75 views

Dot when used in a pattern becomes Times… Why?

In[1] := Hold[a.b] // FullForm Out[1] := Hold[Dot[a,b]] So far so good. ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Matrix Multiplication in context of row and column vectors

I've been looking at some matrices in Mathematica and I've noticed something very weird: They're extremely temperamental when it comes to dot products! For example, if I have the following, ...
0
votes
0answers
21 views

Incorporating Built-In Function Options/Parameters into Shorthand [duplicate]

Shorthand syntax provides an alternate way to apply functions and, in many cases, improves readability. A simple example would be ...
6
votes
1answer
167 views

How can I define a ⊕ operator?

What is wrong with the following code? CirclePlus := SparseArray[Band[{1, 1}] -> {##}] & a_ ⊕ b_ := CirclePlus[a, b] SetDelayed::write: Tag Function in ...
1
vote
2answers
258 views

Conditional range in a parametric plot

I have a program that needs to be done like this: ParametricPlot[ equation, If[x < 1, {x, 0, t}, {x, t, 2}]] But Mathematica didn't seem to recognize the ...
3
votes
1answer
63 views

Pathological behaviour when evaluating a sum

When I declare the function $f$ as follows: f[n_] := Sum[x/Sum[Sqrt[y], {y, 1, x}], {x, 1, n}]/n the input ...
1
vote
2answers
189 views

Making nice code: choosing one of several procedures

Happy new year mathematica gurus of stack exchange! As I see it one of the major obstacles in getting decent at programming mathematica is that, not only do you need to learn how certain commands ...
6
votes
1answer
109 views

Why can Format be used on the left side?

I am learning Mathematica in random order by reading its documentation. This approach is what I like most when learning new things. Consider the following 2 cases. Syntax A: ...
3
votes
3answers
151 views

Is it possible to use infix notation ~ for functions with one argument or more than 2 arguments?

According to a Mathematica textbook, we can write N[x,n] by using infix notation as x ~ N ~ n. How about other functions with ...
1
vote
2answers
234 views

Changing Default Color for Titles, Sections, Subsections, etc., and Items (bullet color) [duplicate]

I'm new to Mathematica 9, and I assume there must be an easy fix for my problem, but I have not been able to find any yet. Essentially, I want the default color for the text of all of my titles, ...
2
votes
1answer
232 views

What are the min and max arguments to EdgeDetect?

What are the min and max arguments to EdgeDetect, for all methods and specifically "Sobel"? How do I find the limits or ranges ...
4
votes
2answers
115 views

Limit won't compute

Does anyone know why the limit: ...
6
votes
3answers
280 views

Finding the square root of a squared number?

Taking the square root of the square of a number Variable set to a real value I'm wondering why these examples a = -4.3; Sqrt@a² Sqrt@(a^2) Sqrt[a^2] Sqrt[a²] ...
6
votes
1answer
209 views

Treat all variables as local in a module [duplicate]

In most languages, any variable defined inside a function is considered local. ...
3
votes
2answers
116 views

Why does the iterator index in Table not work here?

I type the following command line Table[D[#1,varx[[i]]] &,{i,3}] where varx is a vector of dummy variables ...
2
votes
2answers
249 views

import a list of replacement rules

I have a text file with a set of replacement rules, of the form x^3y^2 -> 4, xy^2 -> 2, ... for example. I'm having some issues trying to figure out ...
1
vote
0answers
74 views

Decapitating “explicit” and “implicit” heads

This is a follow up to this question. So far, I named "explicit" heads to those that appear explicitly in the expression. For example, f[x] has an explicit head. I ...
9
votes
3answers
727 views

Difference between @ and @@

I am confused by the commands @ and @@. From the documentation, I learnt that @@ is the ...
4
votes
0answers
149 views

Syntax error for optional pattern, but only in debugger

This expression (explained here by Leonid) evaluates fine unless Evaluation->Debugger is enabled: h[x : (_Integer) : 1] := x Syntax::sntxf: "x:" cannot be ...
1
vote
0answers
39 views

Matching Root[…] objects with patterns, unexpected hidden argument

I needed to write patterns that could distinguish between arbitrary-function and polynomial forms of Root objects, for example, ...
1
vote
0answers
124 views

Defining an operator

Let s be a positive integer and let DifferenceDelta be this function with step = 1. Define ...
0
votes
1answer
88 views

Plot producing many error messages when given complicated function

I'm new to Mathematica and am running in to all sorts of silly difficulties with coding in it. I'm trying to calculate a function f[x, k], normalise it with another ...
2
votes
4answers
200 views

Where did I go wrong with my implementation of finding a plane tangent to a surface?

I am working on finding the plane tangent to a paraboloid at a given point. My code: ...
6
votes
1answer
87 views

Why only up to two \[Prime] superscripts are interpreted as derivatives?

I noticed that only up to two \[Prime] superscripts are interpreted as derivatives. Is there a reason for this restriction? Is it documented? ...
6
votes
3answers
278 views

Where did I go wrong with my implementation of the trapezoidal rule?

One method for doing quadrature, called the trapezoidal rule, improves accuracy by connecting the points on the curve corresponding to the points of subdivision with line segments, forming trapezoidal ...
1
vote
2answers
147 views

Shortcut for Range[]?

I use Range a lot. Is there any syntactic shortcut for it, or do you always have to spell it out?
1
vote
1answer
112 views

Passing f[x][[1]] to FindRoot [duplicate]

FindRoot seems to fail for most examples of the form f[x_?NumericQ] := {x - 3 , x^3}; FindRoot[f[x][[1]], {x, 3}] ...
2
votes
0answers
40 views

Syntax for FrontEnd`SelectionSetStyle

I know FrontEnd`SelectionSetStyle is undocumented, but its name suggests it does what I need. What is its syntax? I have already tried several variations of the ...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

Is it possible to use a mathematical expression as function name?

This might seem as a silly question, but is it feasible to use a mathematical expression as the name of a function? For example, I'm studying the cross section of Compton scattering and there is a ...
1
vote
4answers
117 views

Help with writing a polynomial series [duplicate]

I want to write and evaluate an expression something like Sum[x[i] Product[y[j], {j(!=i), 1, n}], {i, 1, n}] but with correct syntax, where n is a any number ...
6
votes
1answer
93 views

Where does Documentation Center introduce the basics?

While helping a user who mistakenly thought that log rather than Log was the correct built-in function name, I included a ...
3
votes
1answer
185 views

Levels and slots

I am struggling with levels and #, if I understand this I think I will be able to grasp the entire concept. ...
2
votes
2answers
240 views

Manipulate, Import external table, save as CDF, mail presentation

For my work I do data analysis. Most of these analysis are done on big databases with milions of records. I would like to make a manipulate (or animate) using a external dataset and create a CDF ...
4
votes
2answers
204 views

HoldForm[Operator ##] on some list

Recently in response to this question Mr.Wizard suggested an unusual way to summing numbers. This doesn't seem to be documented. ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Guidelines on giving readable names to variables [closed]

I know that one cannot use underscore to a variable name, like degree_of_The_First_Polynomial. But for a long variable name, it ...
0
votes
0answers
142 views

The /. syntax in numerical methods [duplicate]

I have an analytical approximation method for solving an ODE and want to compare this to an NDSolve solution, but the syntax is confusing me. To get the solution from NDSolve, I define the ODE as eqn ...
17
votes
3answers
669 views

How is + as an infix operator associated with Plus?

How is + associated with Plus? Suppose I want to define a head FooBar and have it ...
5
votes
2answers
281 views

Can someone explain this code for joining two lists by the first element of each sublist?

Background (which may be skipped, unless context is needed) I've recently begun learning Mathematica (and only up to chapter 3 of Wellin), but wanted to write some code to get a better feel for ...
11
votes
4answers
196 views

Constraint syntax compaction

Is there a more compact way to represent these constraints: NMaximize[{a+b+c,...
11
votes
1answer
237 views

Infix form of PutAppend ( >>> ) does not work with variable

I'm new to Mathematica, so I suspect this question involves either a misunderstanding involving variables or the usage of >>>. On a webMathematica page ...
2
votes
2answers
245 views

Writing a function that returns a (usable) function

I am trying to create a function that returns Arnold's Cat Map of size n iterated k times. I can get something out of the Function command, but I can't figure out ...
7
votes
3answers
598 views

What is the right way to construct DynamicModule

When I'm creating DynamicModules for CDF purposes I'm usualy basing on my experience with that, particular goal and content rather than on deep insight. I want to ...