Technical Documentation - How Does Maple Compare? - Maplesoft


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Compare: Technical Documentation

In this video: Creating rich technical documents with Maple's Smart Document Interface

The Maple Smart Document Interface is an integrated computation and technical documentation environment. Documentation is part of the workflow, not an after-thought requiring separate tools or add-on products.

You do not need to write your report as you perform calculations if you don't want to. Most of the time, you will start by working out the math and then add explanations, remove dead-end exploration paths, and add structures such as sections and tables. Until then, meaningful mathematical notation and self-documenting context-menu operations provide a record of your steps automatically. You can then add text and mathematical explanations, add annotations to plots, create diagrams, add images, organize the document into sections and subsections, hide steps that interfere with the document flow, and transform your calculations into a full technical report.

Do you need to make a change to the calculations after the document is polished? Maple documents are "live," so even after your report is complete, you can make changes and recompute all of the calculations and plots in the document. Instantly, you can have a new report.

Show Only What You Want to Show

Maple gives you the flexibility to decide how much, or how little, of the computational steps and commands to show in your document and how that content will appear. Initializations, procedure definitions, commands, and more can all be hidden from the casual reader, while still remaining accessible. You can ensure that the most important content is prominent in your document, allowing the reader to focus on what you have to say and not on the tool.

Maple does not require you to include input on one line or output on the next line. Results can appear on the same line as the question, thus, making the document more compact. Results can even appear in the middle of a sentence:

When the number of rows of fins in the radiator is 14, the radiator width required is .0364[[m]]

Not Just Reports

Maple documents are much more than static reports.

Maple documents are live: values can be changed and, with a click of a button, all of the computations and plots are recomputed while leaving the explanatory text intact.

Maple documents can also be full, interactive applications. By incorporating buttons, sliders, gauges, math entry boxes, and other interactive components, your Maple document becomes a tool that can be used by others, including those who have never used Maple before.

The resulting documents can be shared directly with other Maple users, exported to HTML or PDF, or presented as a slideshow. Documents can even be published as "live" applications by using MapleNet, a platform that allows Maple users to publish interactive Maple documents on the web for use by others in their organization.

Beyond Word Processors

Maple provides standard word processing tools such as font control, built-in styles, tables, hyperlinks, document templates, and style sheets. Unlike standard word processors, Maple also includes a math editor that can be used for calculations and mathematical text, mathematical symbol completion, collapsible sections, a spell-checker that is "aware" of standard mathematical terms, and a built-in math dictionary.