i41CX Reduce


I'm using i41CX for the iPad which is a great piece of software. In addition to the HP41 emulator, it contains a computer algebra solver called REDUCE. There is a version of REDUCE at Source Forge that supposedly runs on a macbook. I would like to write and debug REDUCE programs on my macbook before moving them to the iPad i41CX app. However, when I download, unzip and run the REDUCE application on the macbook, nothing happens. I've looked for specific installation instructions for the macbook but can't find them anywhere. I just purchased the macbook and I'm brand new to apple so I'm sure that's the problem. :)

Anyone using REDUCE on i41CX that would know how to install and run the OSX version of REDUCE software on a macbook? Thank you in advance for the help


Can you provide a URL?

I was only able to find this version on sf.net: http://sourceforge.net/projects/reduce-algebra/files/reduce-x86_64-mac_10.6_snowleopard-darwin10.7.0-20110414.tar.bz2/download

That version is not a native Mac Cocoa app. And I do not know if there is a native Mac Cocoa app available. Cocoa is Mac's GUI interface/API.

To run that version you'll have to install X11. X11 may or may not be installed on your Mac. If not, you can get the install package from your OS/X installation media.

X11 is cross-platform client-server windowing technology. Thankfully it's included and supported by Apple. I use X11 everyday.

If that is the correct download URL, then launch X11 (Command-Space, then type X11 in spotlight and the X11 app should be a the top of the list if installed). When you launch X11 you'll be greeted with an xterm terminal window. From that window type:

cd ~/Downloads #or /Application if you dragged to Applications
tar jxvf reduce-x86_64-mac_10.6_snowleopard-darwin10.7.0-20110414.tar.bz2
#you may not need to execute "tar" if Safari automatically extracted for you.
#BTW you should turn off that "feature" of Safari for security reasons.
cd reduce-x86_64-mac_10.6_snowleopard-darwin10.7.0-20110414
To make repeated invocations easier, then right click (or 2 finger tap) the X11 icon in the dock and select Options/Keep In Dock and then right click again and select Applications/Customize and add the above commands separated by semi-colons (e.g. cd ~/Downloads/reduce-x86_64-mac_10.6_snowleopard-darwin10.7.0-20110414; ./reduce). In the future you will just need to right-click on X11, then select Applications/Reduce.

I've never used this version of Reduce. I built my own from the source and run it from the CLI (xterm in my case).

Good luck.

Update, I forgot to add that you'll want to add the math fonts to your font path:

xset +fp $PWD/reduce.fonts/
This will make your X11 command line look like this assuming you extracted or moved the app to /Applications:

cd /Applications/reduce-x86_64-mac_10.6_snowleopard-darwin10.7.0-20110414; xset +fp $PWD/reduce.fonts/; ./reduce

Screen shot from my testing:

Edited: 20 May 2011, 9:20 a.m.


Egan thanks so much for the help, but now I'm really confused.

I have a macbook Air - the latest version running Snow Leopard. I downloaded the version of REDUCE that you referenced. I assumed, since the file name contains snow leopard in it, that it was compatible. I unzipped it and moved it into the application direction like any other normal mac applications, click on the application icon, it appears to run (I see it in the dock for a second or two) and then shut down with no error messages.

I assumed that since the file name had "snow leopard" in it it would run like any other application. Are you saying the version I downloaded is NOT compatible with Snow Leopard or do I have to do something other than install it like you would normally install a standard program on an Apple with Snow Leopard?

To help you understand my background, I'm a chief consulting engineer for a large corporation and I'm spending a lot of time reviewing the work of less experienced engineers designing power generation components. As such, having an HP calculator on an iPad handy gives me a way of quickly reviewing their work with simple calculations. With the addition of REDUCE, it's much more powerful. But I'm afraid that, other than HP calculators and systems like Mathematica and ANSYS, ProEngineer, etc. , my programming days ended during the last century with FORTRAN, BASIC, Turbo Pascal, TRS80's, and VAX 11/780s. It's been a very long time!

Thanks for the help, but I may be too far gone for this! lol



Jack, did you check if X11 is available on you Mac? It comes with the MacOS install disk under additional features.


I do have X11 on my macbook air. I can run it from utilities. I can't yet figure out how to run reduce from X11.

I'm ancient, and not familiar with the Mac system but it looks a lot like my DOS days. lol So please forgive me if I'm using incorrect terminology here.

I am assuming I have to install reduce and all it's supporting files (including the fonts Egan referenced) in a particular DIRECTORY. Then I need to ensure that X11 knows the correct PATH to all of these files. Then I assume I run REDUCE by just typing REDUCE at the X11 command prompt?

Since I don't know anything about how to set paths or the X11 command syntax it should be interesting.



Where have you installed the reduce package? Tell us the directory. If it is in applications, the base path is something like ~/Applications/reduce-<something>

The ~ is an abbreviation for your home directory. Omit it if you have installed the file in the global Application directory.

In the shell, you can type part of a directory or file name and then hit the tab key for a completion.


Got it working! Here is what I did:

1) downloaded the Snow Leopard version of REDUCE from SourceForge,
2) unzipped the files into the /Application/ folder (the zip file includes fonts),,
3) went to /Applications/Utilities/ and ran X11
4) typed in /Applications/reduce at the prompt.

Thank you so much Markus and Egan!



Hi Egan,

I installed REDUCE on Mac os x according to your instructions. It works well. However, gnuplot package does not work. I also installed gnuplot. It works alone, but it still does not work into REDUCE. May be gnuplot must be installed in a specific path or something like that, but I don't know this path. So, do you have an idea to install REDUCE including gnuplot package?

Thank you


Sorry I do not. I rarely use Reduce. Sage (sagemath.org) is much more complete and well integrated, so I tend to use that.

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