Wolfram Computation Meets Knowledge

The Mathematica Story: A Scrapbook

Three Decades of Contributions to Invention, Discovery and Education

Michael Berry, Melville Wills Professor of Physics, University of Bristol, UK

In the several decades of my theoretical physics research before Mathematica, I performed very few numerical calculations; numerics (mainly fighting with Fortran, which I found dreadful) was something I imposed on my students. By the mid-1980s I was starting to use BASIC, which was more friendly. But the instant I learned about Mathematica in 1988 (from John Guckenhimer), I realized that this software, together with my newly acquired Mac II computer, was exactly what I needed. And so it proved: since then, I have done almost all the numerics and created all the graphics in more than a hundred research papers. People sometimes recommend other software for particular tasks (manipulating matrices,, creating pictures, performing algebra, …) but Mathematica has the advantage of being a single rich environment within which I can do everything.

Congratulations on a quarter-century of Mathematica, which has transformed the way I work, along with thousands of scientists worldwide.