Maplesoft Blogger Profile: Laurent Bernardin

Executive Vice-President of Research and Development

Laurent Bernardin is the Executive Vice-President of Research and Development as well as Chief Scientist at Maplesoft, responsible for the corporate technology vision as well as all product development.

A contributor to the Maple project for 14 years, Laurent has held increasingly senior positions at Maplesoft since joining the company full-time in 1999, successfully delivering over 40 product releases and leading the R&D team to achievements such as the breakthrough releases of Maple 15 as well as MapleSim. Under his tenure, the R&D department at Maplesoft has grown from 33 to over 60 people today.

Laurent is a recognized authority in the area of scientific computation and has published numerous papers on mathematical algorithms as well as parallel and distributed computation. Laurent is an active member of the research community, serving on the editorial board of the Journal for Symbolic Computing and is regularly asked to serve on program committee or act as referee for prominent conferences in the field, such as ISSAC (International Symposium on Symbolic and Algebraic Computing), ACA (Applications of Computer Algebra), IAMC (Internet Accessible Mathematical Computations) and CASC (Computer Algebra and Scientific Computing). Frequent speaking engagements and invited lectures allow Laurent to share his thoughts on Maple and mathematical computation systems with audiences at top research institutions and companies around the world. In 2004, Laurent accepted the NSERC Synergy Award on behalf of Maplesoft, recognizing our long-term partnership with the University of Waterloo. Laurent also serves on the W3C Math Working Group as well as on the Numeric Math Consortium, defining industry standards such as the MathML markup language for mathematical expressions.

Prior to joining Maplesoft, Laurent held research and IT positions at ETH Zurich, ran a software consulting business and co-founded an e-commerce startup company.

Laurent holds a PhD (Dr. sc. tech.) in Computer Science from ETH Zurich, Switzerland, focusing on algorithms for Symbolic Computation as well as an engineering degree (Dipl. Ing. ETH), also from ETH Zurich.

Posts by Laurent Bernardin

This is one of my favorite events of the year. When we launch a new release of Maple, I get to see the work of so many talented individuals at Maplesoft come together in a form that I am sure will delight, and maybe even surprise you.

We are holding true to our principles with Maple 18. Hundreds of new mathematical algorithms further strengthen a computational engine that will help you tackle your toughest challenges. The user interface experience continues to become smarter, allowing you to focus on getting results without fighting with syntax. Connectivity options are again becoming richer.

A personal favorite of mine is the newly enhanced Explore functionality, which allows you to, with a couple of clicks, go from a mathematical expression to an interactive Math App. Math Apps allow you to explore the parameter space of the expression, gain insight into its behavior and even, in conjunction with Maple T.A., produce a gradeable Möbius App that allows you to assess a student’s interaction with the app and hence their understanding of the underlying concepts. The expanded Explore functionality is just part of a collection of advancements in Maple 18 that support The Möbius Project.

Overall, the new features of Maple 18 are quite numerous and I won’t try to list them all here. However, I do want to mention a few areas that have received special attention:

  • Statistics: Maple 18 includes lots of enhancements to statistics computations and visualization, such as new time series functionality that allows you to find patterns, make forecasts, and visualize time-based data. For the classroom, a new Student Statistics package, together with a range of bundled Math Apps, provide a simplified and interactive environment for instructors and students alike.

  • Physics: This package for representing and computing with concepts from general relativity to quantum mechanics continues to grow by leaps and bounds, with over 500 enhancements just in this release alone. We are convinced that this is the best computational environment available for researchers in this area.

  • Engineering: Key enhancements for control analysis, signal processing, and code generation to Python and Perl are just a few of the new features that engineers will note and appreciate. There’s even import/export for STL graphics files, which, amongst other things, means you can now print out your favorite Maple plots on a 3-D printer!

I think you will agree that Maple 18 exemplifies all the effort and attention that we have put into it.  And there’s more to come - this release is just the start of a stream of product announcements that you can expect from us in the coming months. Stay tuned!

On Thursday, Feb. 27, we are hosting our first-ever Virtual User Summit.   This day provides Maplesoft’s academic community a chance to learn more about the different ways Maplesoft technology is being used in education and research, a chance to interact with Maplesoft employees as well as each other, and a chance to get a glimpse into the future of education.

The virtual nature of this conference is a very tangible example of how much technology has changed our lives.  No less dramatic is the effect of technology on education.  In the keynote presentations at this conference, you will learn about Maplesoft’s vision for the future of education. You’ll also get to see tangible examples of technology that is building towards that vision, including sneak peeks of some things we are working on.

Visit Maplesoft Virtual User Summit for the full agenda and to register.  “Doors open” at 8:30 Eastern Time and the keynote presentations start at 9:00.

We are looking forward to this chance to come together and share our passion for technology and technical education.  Hope to see you there!

Technology is changing the face of education. An obvious statement, of course. Everybody from students to instructors to parents will agree. Over 40 years ago, the introduction of the pocket calculator allowed us to change the focus from menial calculations to applying our knowledge to solve problems and discover the power of mathematics. 

Since then we have seen leaps from innovation to innovation. The personal computer. Computer Algebra systems. Tablet computing....

Everyone knows that Maple combines a smart user interface with a highly sophisticated mathematical engine, where common tasks are performed quickly and seamlessly with point, click and drag operations. Of equal importance, however, is the fact that Maple is also backed by a comprehensive programming language. Also called "Maple", this language combines elements from procedural languages (like C), functional languages (like Lisp) as well as object oriented languages (like C++...

Every year at Maplesoft, we continue to pursue our mission of making powerful computational mathematics easily accessible within a friendly environment. Maple 17 is no exception: Hundreds of new algorithms, from differential equations to statistics to signal processing, continue to keep Maple ahead of the curve. At the same time, a wealth...

Never before has the educational landscape been changing as fast as it is today, driven by a new generation of students who are growing up with instant access to on-demand information. This generation relies on ubiquitous network access and takes for granted technology that permeates every aspect of their lives. Phones and tablets are everyday companions and are used to connect with their peers, take classroom notes and research school projects. Beyond being mere consumers...

MapleSim has seen a rapid evolution since its inception in 2008 as a multi-domain system-level modeling and simulation environment. Market response has been outstanding: Maplesoft has been working with an expanding list of key industry players such as AISIN AW Co., Ltd. and B&R,  while major customers like

Released today, with over 4500 additions and enhancements, Maple 16 reinforces our track record for consistent innovation and industry leadership in areas like ease of use and symbolic computing performance.

The iPad is a very exciting device and it has been gaining broad adoption from our academic and professional customers alike. It was a logical step for us to bring Maple technology to this platform.
 
The Maple Player for iPad is now available in the Apple App Store. It comes bundled with ready-made interactive Maple documents, covering topics like integration, differentiation, computing...

MapleSim has been delivering unique advantages in physical modeling and system simulation for many years. Today we release the latest iteration: MapleSim 5. Looking back at some of the earlier versions of our software, it is hard to believe that this is the same product; from the user interface to the component libraries to the simulation engine, every part of the system has experienced a striking evolution.

Like its predecessors, MapleSim 5 is based on the Maple mathematical...

I am pleased to announce that Maple 15 will be available on April 13. We are very proud of this new release of Maple, which has been twelve months in the making, and I...

Ten years ago, I wrote an article for Dr. Dobb’s Journal on Analytical Computing. Many of the techniques I discussed there, like hybrid symbolic-numeric computing and automated code generation have since revealed themselves as indispensable tools for engineering. Others, like exact computing, have yet to reveal their potential.

 A lot has happened since that article, of course, and it’s about time I share some thoughts about what the current challenges are. There are three areas that are top of my mind and that I would like to discuss here: Parallel computing, collaborative software and user interface abstractions.

Modelica is an open language for (lumped parameter) modeling and simulation and is generating a growing following, especially in Europe. Modelica is also at the heart of simulation tools like MapleSim. We are generally not making a big deal of that fact and as a result we have a regular stream of actual and potential customers asking us why we are not more vocal about our use of Modelica. Do we not believe in open...

For almost 20 years, Math education has been recognized as the first killer application for symbolic computing. By taking out the grunt work of manipulating equations, calculating integrals and performing matrix computations with symbolic entries, systems such as Maple have transformed the math classroom.

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