Similar to Python , MATLAB is a mathematical and graphical software package used for mathematical computation, analysis and visualization . It can be used in modeling of different kinds of Systems , Simulation of complex objects etc. It helps in presenting the Scientific and engineering graphics . It facilitates in the algorithm and Application development, including Graphical User Interface building.
MATLAB can be expanded as MATrix Laboratory . MATLAB is a programming language developed by Math Works. Let us see its features in a greater detail.
MATLAB is an interactive programming environment. The basic data element is an array that does not require mentioning the dimension details. This allows you to solve many technical computing problems in less than a fraction of the time to write a program in a scalar non-interactive language such as C or FORTRAN. It can be used for the following tasks.
Computing support : To work with vectors ,matrices and polynomials as vectors and variables using statistical or math-oriented packages.
Programming capabilities : To use and to write scripts ,classes and functions for programming using external language and library interfaces, including Java, C, C++, .NET, and Web services. MATLAB has object oriented capabilities that can be implemented with m-script . It can be used to write interactive programs .It can be run both under interactive sessions and as a batch job.
App Building : It is used to develop apps interactively using App Designer, or programmatically using MATLAB functions.
Software Development Tools : It facilitates debugging and testing, organizing large projects, source control integration, toolbox packaging etc.
Graphs and plots : It is used to plot graphics and save them in PDF and jpg formats . You can run your analyses on larger data sets, and scale up to clusters and clouds. It supports plotting, printing, graphing etc and widely used for the below types of plotting.
• Two- and three-dimensional Plots ,images ,animation etc
• Polar Plot
• Semilogx or Semilogy
• Log log
• Bode Plot
• Nichols Plot
• Nyquist Plot
Tool Boxes : MATLAB features a family of application-specific solutions called toolboxes. In version 7 , there are a lot of toolboxes.
Image Processing Toolbox
GUIDE (allows the creation of interactive user interfaces).
Simulink (for modeling, simulating and analyzing systems).
Psychtoolbox (set of tools that aid in vision research).
The Distributed computing toolbox (set of tools that aid in distributing models over a cluster).
The optimization toolbox (includes various algorithms for minimization).
Other areas in which toolboxes are available include signal processing, control systems, neural networks, fuzzy logic, wavelets and many others.
MATLAB code can be integrated with other languages, enabling you to deploy algorithms and applications within web, enterprise, and production systems.
MATLAB is supported on Unix, Macintosh, and Windows environments. MATLAB is available for a number of environments: Sun/Apollo/VAX station/HP workstations, VAX, Micro VAX, Gould, PC and AT compatibles, 80386 and 80486 computers, Apple Macintosh, and several parallel machines.For many students in mathematics, physical sciences, engineering, economics, and other fields with a heavy numeric component, MATLAB is their first introduction to programming or scientific computing in general.
Python is designed as a general purpose programming language and it supports numerical computing, graphics etc using standard libraries . Whereas , Mat Lab is a numerical computing environment.MATLAB is a proprietary tool and it is very expensive outside the academic setting , for teaching and research. Fortunately, many alternative open-sources like GNU Octave , NumPy (library in Python) ,Sci-lab and Sage are available to address this issue and perform the various functions.