Author Topic: New online, collaborative computing environment for engineers  (Read 788 times)

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Offline ghost0

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New online, collaborative computing environment for engineers
« on: January 29, 2015, 10:56:17 pm »
Hi,

With Dave's permission, we would like to have a discussion here about our pet project that aims to bring true collaboration to engineering and scientific calculations.

The idea is that you will be able to:
  • perform engineering calculations in your browser,
  • share your work easily, and
  • reuse what others have shared.

You will be able to embed almafa.org calculations in your articles, blog posts, etc., readily usable right in the browser with one click.

The almafa.org scripts run in the browser, and they are written in a special extension of Javascript, which allows for a convenient definition of matrices, vectors, physical quantities, special operators, etc. in a format inspired by Matlab.

As for physical quantities, almafa.org lets you truly calculate with them. For example 1/(2*pi * 100 Ohm * 33 nF) evaluates to 48.23 kHz. You can have quantities in vectors, matrices, or even use linear algebra functions on matrices that contain complex quantities.

Not only will the quantities make writing calculations easier, but there will also be lots of shared calculations made by others, ready to be reused. A versioning system will take care of managing the dependencies of the libraries that build on top of each other.

We imagine a Wikipedia-like content generation where engineers create and share their own (open source) libraries, such as design tools, formulas for analog ICs, physical properties of materials, numerical methods, or even fully automated design processes.

At the current stage, the creation of libraries has not been opened to the public yet, but there are already a couple of examples, like http://almafa.org/?sidebar=doc/datasheets/ic/smps/mc34063-1/_mc34063.html (EEVblog #110).

You might understand the problems with the currently available tools if you have ever messed up the units in Excel/Matlab, reimplemented a calculation that had already been implemented by other engineers, or had to click a thousand times when trying to use standalone tools.

Check out this comparison to get a clearer picture of what we are trying to achieve: http://almafa.org/almcsi.png.

As we've been working on this project for more than a year and a half now without getting any feedback from the public, we would really love to know how you like the idea in general, and what you think about the development version at http://almafa.org.

Any comment is greatly appreciated.

Regards,
the almafa.org team
 


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