History of the book

The book was planed in 1991 as Swiss-Czech cooperation of the three institutions:

The Swiss National Science Foundation has stimulated and supported this collaboration through a grant from the "Oststaaten-Soforthilfeprogramm". An additional grant from the ETH "Sonderprogramm Ostkontakte" and support from the Computer Science Department of ETH Zürich made it possible for Dr. S. Bartoň to spend a year in Zürich. He was the communication link between the two groups of authors. In 1993, this collaboration resulted in the first edition of our book with 19 chapters. The programs were written using Maple V Release 2 and MATLAB 4.1. For Maple output we used the ASCII interface instead of the nicer xmaple environment. This way it was easier to incorporate Maple output in the book.

The first edition of this book has been very well received by the community, and this has made it necessary to write a second edition within one year in 1994. We added two new chapters and expanded some old ones. Some typographical errors were corrected, and we also rephrased some text to facilitate understanding. All programs were again adapted to the newest versions of the software i.e. to Maple V Release 3 and to MATLAB Version v4. In order to simplify the production of the book we again chose the pretty print output mode for the Maple output.

In the third edition in 1997 the book has been enlarged by six new chapters. Some of the previous chapters were revised: a new way to solve a system of differential equations was added. The index has been considerably enlarged and split into three parts, two of them containing all Maple and MATLAB commands used in this book. We are indebted to Rolf Strebel for this work. All chapters have been adapted to Maple Version 5 Release 4 and MATLAB 5. With Maple Release 4, some statements have changed compared to the previous editions of this book. MATLAB 5 offers new M-files for the integration of differential equations. While in the older versions one had to specify an interval for the independent variable, there were now new possibilities to stop the integration process. We have made use of this new feature and simplified our codes. As some reviewers criticized that the ASCII output of Maple does not look nice we have transformed all the formulas using the Maple latex command into LaTeX. We thank Erwin Achermann who checked and adapted the layout. We did not make use of the Symbolic Math Toolbox, mainly because we did want to use both systems equivalently and complementary. Because of increasing interest we offered the programs for free on a FTP server.

We were very pleased to hear from our publisher that there were requests for translations into other languages. A Chinese edition was soon published in 1999 followed by a Portuguese edition in 2001.

In 2001, the third edition was sold out and the editors decided to have a second printing of the third edition with updated programs for Maple 7 and MATLAB Version Release 12.1. The computations were performed by Stanislav Bartoň with the help of Dominik Gruntz and Rolf Strebel. Stanislav discovered a bug in the fsolve command in Maple 7. Maplesoft helped us and provided a workaround for that problem.

The fourth edition was enlarged by four new chapters and printed in May 2004. Some of the previous chapters were again revised using new possibilities offered by Maple and MATLAB. Stanislav Bartoň and Jan Pešl tested and adapted all the programs to Maple 9 and MATLAB 6.5 Release 13. The current webpage was created for the book. All Maple and MATLAB programs are available through this web page. The web has become a overwhelming source of information for each one of us. We felt that it would be useful to list some important and interesting web pages related to Maple and MATLAB. This information can be found in the appendix. When we started this book in 1993, there was not much similar material around. The world has definitely changed and one can find many interesting solved problems in scientific computing in cyber space. We are glad to have participated as pioneers in this development.