I would like to know if it's possible to use/install this java library on Mathematica. This library, named SimMetrics, has a lot of string similarity functions that I would like to test.

Here is the list of functions:

Levenstein, NeedlemanWunch, SmithWaterman, SmithWatermanGotoh, SmithWatermanGotohWindowedAffine, Jaro, JaroWinkler, ChapmanLengthDeviation, ChapmanMeanLength, QGramsDistance, BlockDistance, CosineSimilarity, DiceSimilarity, EuclideanDistance, JaccardSimilarity, MatchingCoefficient, MongeElkan, OverlapCoefficient.

I have no knowledge on Java and use a MAC. A thought in Leonid Java Reloader, but it's a complete .jar file, not a small class.


I download the simmetrics_jar_v1_6_2_d07_02_07.jar from the link above, saved it on notebook directory and tryed:


Now I have to use LoadJavaClass? How can a list the available classes?

If I unzip the .jar file, the classes are inside this folder: uk/ac/shef/wit/simmetrics/similaritymetrics/

for example: Levenshtein.class

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Many of these distance functions are built in to Mathematica as well, mostly with the same names. $\endgroup$
    – bill s
    Aug 12, 2013 at 2:25
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Given that you could do it with .NET dlls, I'd say its also possible with Java libraries. Have you tried following this? reference.wolfram.com/mathematica/JLink/tutorial/… $\endgroup$
    – Jonie
    Aug 12, 2013 at 3:26
  • $\begingroup$ tks @Jonie, it was a begin. $\endgroup$
    – Murta
    Aug 12, 2013 at 10:42

1 Answer 1


Looking at this it is easy to figure out what to do:

c = LoadJavaClass[ "uk.ac.shef.wit.simmetrics.similaritymetrics.Levenshtein"]





will get you going. I tried things on Windows, but it should work on Mac alike:

Mathematica graphics

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I just want to add a couple remarks to Rolf's excellent answer. I want to discourage the use of an idiom like ReinstallJava[ClassPath->NotebookDirectory[]] for modifying the Java classpath. ReinstallJava is a destructive operation that might impact other J/Link-using packages currently in use on your system. Instead, use AddToClassPath["some dir containing jar files"]. The Simmetrics library also has a full set of JavaDocs that you can download separately from the site. That type of documentation is indispensable when tinkering with a library via J/Link. $\endgroup$ Aug 13, 2013 at 15:28

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