Frequently Asked Questions

What is a computer algebra system?
A Computer Algebra System (CAS) is a program that can manipulate mathematical expressions, potentially reducing the time it takes to perform cumbersome but trivial calculations. It does this symbolically, so a CAS can return a mathematical expression as a resulting answer.
Why cannot Yacas solve my homework/integrodifferential matrix operator constraint equations/ [insert another problem]?
Yacas is developed by a small group of volunteers and does not yet perform many of the sophisticated tasks that a modern CAS can theoretically handle. Ask the users’ mailing list if you have a specific problem that is covered in the manual and should be solvable by yacas. Yacas consists of a small kernel and a library of interpreted scripts in the easy-to-use yacas language; the scripts contain all CAS-related functionality. You are encouraged to contribute library code for solving a specific problem.
I want to use Yacas from inside my own application. What should I do?
Yacas can be used in several ways: as a command-line application that takes text from standard input and prints text to standard output; as a server listening on a port (also on remote hosts); These options allow you to use the functionality of an installed Yacas application directly from another application without having to link to any Yacas code.
What platforms are supported?
Yacas can be run directly from a web site as a Java applet. In addition, the C++ version of Yacas is very portable and runs on many platforms and OSes, including Unix flavors (including GNU/Linux and derivatives), Mac OS X, EPOC32, Ipaq and probably other devices running embedded Linux, and 32-bit Microsoft Windows (TM).
Yacas gives an error message, a wrong answer, etc. What’s wrong?
Most probably it is a bug in yacas, especially if you expected a correct answer after reading the manuals. Please report it to our bugtracker. If not sure whether this is actually a bug, consider discussing in on our mailing list.
Is there a mailing list?
You bet!