Written by ELO

Words are Everything.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Why IS Ubuntu so Damn GOOD?

I came across an old Linux Gazette (an online emagazine published by Linux Journal) article extolling the wonders of academic software for Linux. The program was Yorick. The author, Cary O'Brien, described Yorick thus:

"Yorick is an interpreted language for numerical analysis used by scientists on machines from Linux laptops to Cray supercomputers."

Looking at the samples of code and the plotting graphs it produced, it reminded me of an old favorite of mine called: SCILAB.

Scilab (short for Science Laboratory) was also adept at numerical analysis and very good graph plotting.

Over the years as I bounced from distro to distro, I would look for Scilab and found it Not-easily-available. I figured the volunteer programmers moved on to other things, and scilab became an orphan.

Yorick sure looked-and-felt a lot like scilab. I decided to grab a copy.

I found a wonderful site on mathematic and scientific software in RPM form. (cited below)


Found yorick.rpm, downloaded it and ran:

rpm -i yorick.rpm.

Dependency hell reared it's ugly head.

RPM told me I ALSO needed a half-a-dozen dependent packages.


Wait a minute, I said to myself, this is Ubuntu and the program to use to install new software was not RPM but APT-GET.

So I typed in: apt-get install yorick.

A couple of minutes later I was running yorick and testing the examples in the LG article.

Another star for Ubuntu.
Linux Journal article:

RPM of Group Applications/Math:

Scilab is still available (although changed from earlier version I remember. None of those great DEMOS.) It even works in VISTA:

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