Summary
GNU Octave is a high-level programming language primarily intended for scientific computing and numerical computation. Octave helps in solving linear and nonlinear problems numerically, and for performing other numerical experiments using a language that is mostly compatible with MATLAB. It may also be used as a batch-oriented language. As part of the GNU Project, it is free software under the terms of the GNU General Public License. The project was conceived around 1988. At first it was intended to be a companion to a chemical reactor design course. Full development was started by John W. Eaton in 1992. The first alpha release dates back to 4 January 1993 and on 17 February 1994 version 1.0 was released. Version 7.1.0 was released on Apr 6, 2022. The program is named after Octave Levenspiel, a former professor of the principal author. Levenspiel was known for his ability to perform quick back-of-the-envelope calculations. In addition to use on desktops for personal scientific computing, Octave is used in academia and industry. For example, Octave was used on a massive parallel computer at Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center to find vulnerabilities related to guessing social security numbers. Acceleration with OpenCL or CUDA is also possible with use of GPUs. Octave is written in C++ using the C++ standard library. Octave uses an interpreter to execute the Octave scripting language. Octave is extensible using dynamically loadable modules. Octave interpreter has an OpenGL-based graphics engine to create plots, graphs and charts and to save or print them. Alternatively, gnuplot can be used for the same purpose. Octave includes a Graphical User Interface (GUI) in addition to the traditional Command Line Interface (CLI); see #User interfaces for details. The Octave language is an interpreted programming language. It is a structured programming language (similar to C) and supports many common C standard library functions, and also certain UNIX system calls and functions.
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