June 1, 1996
Some observers see a research crisis in mathematical computation—a dearth of both fundamental and practical advances; others are concerned about a looming funding crisis. How do you see the situation?
Well, I think Wolfram Research has one of the largest—if not the largest—R&D efforts in mathematical computation anywhere. And certainly I’m pretty happy with the stuff we’re getting done—which ends up being both practical and fundamental. I don’t know so much about the academic mathematical computation scene. But I’m a bit surprised you ask about funding. I think Mathematica has really opened up the market for mathematical computation—and there is starting to be a fair number of people and groups who make their living quite well from distributing Mathematica packages. And there’s certainly room for more of that kind of thing—quite independent of begging for money from governments and the like.