[Haskell-cafe] Haskell for Physicists

Max Rabkin max.rabkin at gmail.com
Wed Sep 30 16:27:09 EDT 2009

I am *not* a physicist, but I imagine many physicists know at least
something of functional analysis, algebra, Lie algebras, etc.

However, when physicists write programs (this is my inference from the
widespread use of Fortran and the computational assignments given to
undergraduate students) they are almost exclusively numerical: very
often evaluating some integrals or integrating a system of
differential equations. Although Haskell can do these things, it's not
a place where Haskell really shines (compared to symbolic

Since I'm not a physicist, I can't give a good example, but think more
of the things Mathematica is good for, rather than Fortran or Matlab.
My impression is that Haskell's advantage over Mathematica is in its
generality: Mathematica is great if it has a builtin function to do
what you want, but it's not a very pleasant programming language.


On Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:39 PM, Khudyakov Alexey
<alexey.skladnoy at gmail.com> wrote:
> В сообщении от Среда 30 сентября 2009 23:29:32 Max Rabkin написал:
>> On Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 9:24 PM, Alberto G. Corona <agocorona at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> > Haskell: mathematics beyond numerical calculus
>> I'd imagine most physicists know a fair bit of mathematics beyond
>> numerical calculus; what they might not know much about is
>> *computation* beyond numerical calculus.
> Could you elaborate this. As physicist I don't quite get it.

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