(1989) Introducing Mathematica, Stephen Wolfram

In this 1989 video presentation, Mathematica ™ creator Stephen Wolfram demonstrates his award winning mathematics software. Wolfram demonstrates numerical calculations, algebraic calculation and graphical renderings. He concludes with a discussion of programming.

A short retrospective from 2008, marking the 20th anniversary links to some interesting historical images

As part of helping in the creation of a 20-year Mathematica scrapbook, I recently found some to-do lists I had written for Mathematica in 1987—a year before Mathematica 1.0 was released.

Much of what is on these lists we have now done—though some we have not. But to me the most striking thing about the lists is that even after 21 years, almost everything on them is still worth doing.

It’s a reminder of just how long-term an undertaking Mathematica is. Starting from the foundations we created 20+ years ago, we have built up layer after layer of capabilities, allowing us to go steadily further.

The press release mentions Mathematica being available for the Macintosh, being bundled with the NeXT, and announced for SGI and Sun workstations, and IBM’s RT PC. Also Ardent and Stellar supercomputers.

BYTE magazine awarded a Distinction to Mathematica:

Mathematica is another breakthrough Macintosh application. It does for students of calculus, symbolic algebra, and some discrete mathematics what calculators did for those learning arithmetic. Confirmed mathphobic students may very well be drawn into Mathematica’ s impressive displays and its ability to solve equations quickly and display graphical results. It could enable you to absorb the algebra and calculus that seemed impossible to comprehend from a textbook.