General Purpose Systems


MACSYMA (Project MAC's SYmbolic MAnipulation System) is a large computer algebra system for symbolic and numerical computations. Originally MACSYMA was developed by the MATH lab group at M.I.T. The descendants of MACSYMA (circa 1982) fall into two camps, viz., the commercialized Symbolics MACSYMA and its successor from Macsyma, Inc., and the versions released to National Energy Software Center at Argonne, Illinois, which are based on the "public" MIT source code for the DEC PDP-10 MACLisp system. The latter ones do not have the Symbolics enhancements, but they have been modified from time to time by several individuals or groups. One of these modifications is known as MAXIMA. It is a Common-Lisp based implementation informally maintained by Prof. W. Schelter at the University of Texas. Maxima has been compiled under various common lisps: AKCL, Lucid, Franz, TI common lisp and symbolics common lisp. Of the above AKCL is free [on]. AKCL also provides the best performance. MAXIMA is available on TI Explorer, MIPS, Sun, and other platforms. A Beta version for PC exists.

MAXIMA is not public domain code. A license should be obtained from

ESTSC - Energy Science & Technology Software Center
P.O. Box 1020 Oak Ridge TN 37831-1020
Phone: 615-576-2606

Currently their charge for 1 machine is $165 to universities. Site licenses are also available. The current version of MAXIMA 4-155. After having obtained the license from ESTSC, the software can be downloaded from

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General Purpose Systems

Last updated: November 15, 1994