CAS beta testers wanted


ND1 is getting a CAS powered by Mathematica™ in the cloud via WolframAlpha™ commercial API.

Are you a regular here and do you have an iPhone/iPod touch and would you like to do some beta testing? If so, please sign up at the ND1 forum and send me a PM (personal message), or respond to this post and I send you an email with more info.

The CAS will have a mixture of 50g compatible commands, Mathematica commands, and a few ones unique to ND1. The old 50g commands will be able to do some new tricks. As with all functions in ND1, the CAS is accessible on the command-line and from either RPL+ (a superset of RPL) or JavaScript.

The bad: needs an Internet connection. Every command takes between 2-5s to produce a result.

The good: utilizes arguably the best CAS on the planet. Every command takes no more than 5s to produce a result. The app adds considerable power, but remains lightweight.

Here're some RPL code snippets.

<< '1/ln(x)' INTVX >>   ==> 'li(x)'
<< 'sin(x^2)' 'x' Integrate >> ==> 'sqrt(pi/2)*S(sqrt(2/pi)*x)'
<< 'e^(x^2)' 'x' Integrate >> ==> '1/2*sqrt(pi)*erfi(x)'
<< (0.5, 0.8) erfi >> ==> (0.28851, 0.869945)

<< 'd1y(x)*cos(x)=sin(2*x)' 'y(x)' DESOLVE >> ==> ['C[1]-2*cos(x)']
<< 'd1y(x)*2*y(x)=exp(3*x)' 'y(x)' 'x' desolve >> ==> [ '-sqrt(e^(3*x)+6*C[1])/sqrt(3)' 'sqrt(e^(3*x)+6*C[1])/sqrt(3)' ]

<< ['x^2*y', 'x^2*y', 'y^2*z'] Curl >> ==> ['2*y*z',0,'-x*(x-2*y)']

<< 'x^2+x+1' '2*x+4' 'x' PolynomialQuotientRemainder >> ==> [ 'x/2-1/2' 3 ]

<< [[3,6,0],[2,4,1],[1,1,1]] charpoly >> ==> '-lambda^3+8*lambda^2-6*lambda+3'
<< [[4 1][2 -1]] EGV >> ==> [[ '1/2+1/4*(3+sqrt(33))' 1 ] [ '1/2+1/4*(3-sqrt(33))' 1 ]] [ '1/2*(3+sqrt(33))' '1/2*(3-sqrt(33))' ]

<< "LaguerreL" [4, p] orthopoly >> ==> '1/24*(p^4-16*p^3+72*p^2-96*p+24)'

<< ['x^2+y^2=1', '(x-2)^2+(y-1)^2=4'] solve >> ==> [[ 'x=0' 'y=1' ][ 'x=4/5' 'y=-3/5' ]]

CAS usage notes

We recently talked about generating digits of Pi.


<< 'pi' 10000 N >>
<< 10000 setBigFPrecision 'pi' asBigFloat >>
gives you 10,000 digits in 2 seconds flat. Yes, this is "cheating" because it uses a supercomputer in Urbana-Champaign to do the work (in itself pretty cool if you think about it…). But the net result is that you have the number you want in your mobile device. (This actually does return a BigFloat that you can do some (limited) math with; not just digits in text form.)

Everything in ND1 is user-extensible. So is the CAS.

If you want a certain function from Mathematica (or from the even larger set of functionality from W|A), you can usually add it with as little as one line of code. (Because ND1 has an HTML5 display you could even display plot images or tables, etc.)

How to extend the CAS


P.S.: Even though ND1 runs in 2x compatibility mode on iPad, I really don't want people using it like that. There's an epic (or so it feels...) iPad version in the works, called "CalcPad", but it will still take a while to become available. If you "only" (as if) have an iPad, please don't apply to this. Thank you.

EDIT: fixed first link.

Edited: 29 July 2012, 8:45 a.m.


A very interesting idea !

I've no IPhone nor Ipod touch :(


Why the iPad hating?! I have recently acquired an iPad and have almost immediately installed ND1 on it. Apart from rather fuzzy (but still perfectly readable) graphs everything that I have tried seems to work fine. It's a fascinating piece of software. Is there any reason why it won't work properly on an iPad?

Nigel (UK)



Thanks for the compliment.

Don't get me wrong, I love the iPad. Also, the software works. But it's a far cry from taking advantage of the big screen. CalcPad does so and you'll see what I mean, when it's released.

In the interim, if the blurry pixels didn't render you unconscious until now, and you'd like to beta-test the CAS, I shall oblige.



Hi Oliver,

It's off topic, but can I use an IPOD touch without any subsciption ?
Does it will work at home with my wifi and with public wifi?
Is there any special requirement for ND1 use (RAM ? speed ?)?


Hi Gilles.

Yes, iPod touch doesn't need a subscription and since iOS 5 it doesn't even need iTunes. It connects to WiFi very well. ND1 runs fine with any model (starting with the first one from years ago, running on iOS 3). All newer models have 256 MB RAM, which is more than plenty.

The Retina display in all newer models has a resolution of 960x480. If you've never seen it, it's absolutely gorgeous.

There's so many great apps out there, I think it's almost impossible to regret getting one. (Never met anyone who wouldn't have been raving about it.) They're really fantastic little devices.

m48 is a free, great Emu48-based HP-48. m48+ is quite expensive ($15) but it gives you a 50g with a smart keyboard. There's a ton of other calc apps (but of course only one ND1 ;-)).

If you decide to get one, ping me to get the app and CAS for free.


EDIT: tempered encouragement to get "Designed in California, Made in China" gadget.

Edited: 30 July 2012, 12:24 p.m.

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