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A New Kind of Science Explorer: Mathematica Kit Software Now Available

Published May 14, 2003

Use your Mathematica to extend the discoveries of A New Kind of Science

May 14, 2003–A year after the release of Stephen Wolfram’s major bestseller, A New Kind of Science, there is growing evidence that a paradigm shift of historical proportions has been initiated. Immediately becoming one of the most talked-about science books in decades, A New Kind of Science has already inspired numerous publications and generated such interest that a major conference has been organized for June 27 to 29, 2003, in Boston.

A New Kind of Science Explorer: Mathematica Kit (NKS Explorer: MK) will greatly assist those interested in researching the world of simple programs and sharing their discoveries with others. Based on the same programs that Wolfram used to create the striking graphics in his book, NKS Explorer: MK enables the user to take full advantage of Mathematica‘s integrated environment.

Like A New Kind of Science Explorer, NKS Explorer: MK offers over 450 different types of experiments with an essentially infinite number of variations, all easily accessible and intuitively organized. While NKS Explorer: MK is fully capable of presenting the results of experiments with the same kind of powerful diagrammatic graphics used in Wolfram’s book, the fact that it operates within the Mathematica environment opens the door to powerful analysis capabilities, integration with other programs, and organization and presentation in the active and flexible Mathematica notebook format.

NKS Explorer: MK not only allows users to generate beautiful visual representations like those in the book but also gives them access to the underlying data generated by the experiments. This data can then be analyzed with world-class functions from Mathematica‘s vast library, or users can further manipulate the results with Mathematica‘s powerful symbolic programming language–the very language that Wolfram originally developed to aid him in exploring the computational world and that made A New Kind of Science possible.

Because Mathematica is a full-fledged programming language, the functions in NKS Explorer: MK can be seamlessly incorporated into larger structures. Users can rapidly create graphics or other representations for a large number of cases or subcases, which is essential for working within the NKS paradigm. Essentially any kind of systematic searching, manipulation, and analysis can be built and reused, but there is no limit on what kinds of programs can be constructed. It is even possible to write programs in other languages, such as C and Java, that rely on the functions in NKS Explorer: MK to perform certain tasks.

Besides leveraging the full power of Mathematica‘s library and programming environment, NKS Explorer: MK lets users document, organize, present, and share their efforts using Mathematica‘s highly flexible notebook document format. The notebook format is a convenient way to store both the results and the structures that generate them, enabling users to easily modify parameters or otherwise transform the programs that produced such interesting results. Thus, someone viewing the notebook for the first time can immediately become immersed in the material, possibly making new discoveries of his or her own. And because the notebook format is flexible in its visual appearance, it is easy to generate publication-quality documents or slide-show presentations.

NKS Explorer: MK provides users with the additional functionality and connectivity they need to take the foundation provided by Mathematica and NKS Explorer and perform substantive research and analysis. Furthermore, in addition to all of its individual features, Mathematica offers a large number of export and integration options. This means that users can not only convert their notebooks and graphics into popular static formats but also integrate the knowledge the notebooks contain into more dynamic distribution systems when they are ready to share their discoveries.

More information about A New Kind of Science Explorer: Mathematica Kit is available.