I tried some 3D plots now. The first graph is the function

\(f(x,y) = x^2+y^3\)

Here is the Euler plot

To get it in Euler, you have to enter

>plot3d("x^2+y^3",r=1,>spectral,>contour,>user):

Then turn it around so that it looks like the image above. In Maple 16, I got the following result.

The command is a simple plot3d command

plot3d(x^2+y^3,x=-1..1,y=-1..1)

After that, I selected various options from the right click menu and turned the graph. Maple can export the graph to PNG like Euler. It uses the screen size for the export. If you decrease the screen size, Maple will reformat the plot so that the numbers remain readable. Here is a small version.

This is not perfect, since the labels are truncated below a certain size. In Mathematica, I could get the following result.

I used the following code.

Plot3D[x^2 + y^3, {x, -1, 1}, {y, -1, 1}, PlotStyle -> Directive[Orange, Specularity[White, 40]], Mesh -> None, BoxRatios -> {1, 1, 1}]

There are packages in the net for level lines, or you can add a shadow plot beneath the plot. But I did not figure this out yet.

I tried several other stuff, and it turned out that Mathematica is more capable than Maple, and of course more than Maxima in Euler. Some simplifications simply did not take place in Maple, such as sin(pi/12) or some sums. Probably, there are packages for this in Maple and Maxima too.

But the square brackets [] are a nuisance. On the German keyboard they are difficult to enter, as well as the curly brackets {}. Both need the Alt-Gr key, and a wide movement with the left hand to 8-9 resp. 7-0.

Ulrich Kortenkamp… and another day where you might be better off with a Mac: While brackets are hard to find at all (they are not written on the keyboard), they are conveniently located at alt-5 and alt-6, and of course there’s an alt key on either side of the space bar.

Thank you for your Mathematica blog posts, I didn’t expect that you never used Mathematica before, but it is great to read a user report from a first-time user who isn’t first-time mathematician 🙂