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NIST digital library of mathematical functions. (English) Zbl 1019.65001

Summary: The National Institute of Standards and Technology is preparing a Digital Library of Mathematical Functions (DLMF) to provide useful data about special functions for a wide audience. The initial products will be a published handbook [Zbl 1198.00002] and companion Web site [http://dlmf.nist.gov/], both scheduled for completion in 2003. More than 50 mathematicians, physicists and computer scientists from around the world are participating in the work. The data to be covered include mathematical formulas, graphs, references, methods of computation, and links to software. Special features of the Web site include 3D interactive graphics and an equation search capability. The information technology tools that are being used are, of necessity, ones that are widely available now, even though better tools are in active development. For example, LATEX files are being used as the common source for both the handbook and the Web site. This is the technology of choice for presentation of mathematics in print but it is not well suited to equation search, for example, or for input to computer algebra systems. These and other problems, and some partially successful work-arounds, are discussed in this paper and in the companion paper by B. R. Miller and A. Youssef [ibid. 38, 121–136 (2003; Zbl 1019.65002)].

MSC:

33-00 General reference works (handbooks, dictionaries, bibliographies, etc.) pertaining to special functions
33F99 Computational aspects of special functions
65D20 Computation of special functions and constants, construction of tables
65Y15 Packaged methods for numerical algorithms

Software:

DLMF
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