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Rocky Mountain Mathematica ’99

Published July 18, 1999

July 18, 1999–This year’s Rocky Mountain Mathematica courses were sold out early in the registration process. Fifty students came to Frisco, Colorado, for introductory and intermediate courses taught by Ed Packel and Stan Wagon–some from as far away as schools in Egypt and Sweden. Many of the participants were college, university, and community college instructors in math, physics, or computer science, and there were a few college undergraduate and industry attendees.

Along with instruction, Rocky Mountain Mathematica participants shared interesting uses of Mathematica. Tim Coutts of the National Renewable Energy Lab worked on a package related to modeling of the current density generated by multijunction solar cells under both arbitrary and standard spectra. He hopes the package will help in the development of higher efficiency solar cells. Sandy Miller from SUNY Brockport worked on a package for evaluating improper integrals of rational functions.

To aid with questions and technical issues related to hardware, two assistants were added to the staff for this year’s courses: Dan Schwalbe of Macalester College and Ann Serdynski, an undergraduate at Lake Forest College.

The programming contest was won by Joel Zeitlin from California State University, Northridge, who came up with a neat way of removing duplicates (for a given tolerance) in a set of points in the plane.

Rocky Mountain Mathematica is sponsored by Wolfram Research, Inc. and Springer-Verlag New York.

Participants’ Comments

“The instructors and workshop were terrific. Ed Packel and Stan Wagon’s enthusiasm for Mathematica is contagious. Their five-day course got me kick-started on using and wanting to learn more about Mathematica.”

Sanford S. Miller
State University of New York, Brockport

“I had a tremendous time at Rocky Mountain Mathematica. The instructors had boundless enthusiasm for and an encyclopedic knowledge of Mathematica. The afternoon break for hiking, cycling, or swimming left me invigorated and alert for the evening session. During the lab time I was able to complete an animation project that I will be showing to my students. I highly recommend this workshop to anyone wanting to learn Mathematica from the ground up or enhance their knowledge of the program.”

Paul Grant
University of California, Davis

“Stan was a terrific instructor and introduced both humor and depth into his classes. The value I received from the Intermediate Course was tremendous and will influence the way in which I approach my future programming problems. I strongly recommend anyone even vaguely interested in Mathematica to attend this course. This applies to relatively experienced programmers as well as to novices.”

Tim Coutts
National Renewable Energy Lab, Golden, Colorado