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Maple is a multi-paradigm programming language and symbolic, numeric computing environment, generally used in mathematic applications.

Maple also covers other aspects of technical computing, such as visualization, data analysis, matrix computation, and connectivity. Multidomain physical modeling and code generation is accomplished through a toolbox, known as MapleSim. The language allows users to enter mathematics in traditional mathematical notation, with support for numeric computations, arbitrary precision, and symbolic computation and visualization. Custom user interfaces can also be created.

Maple is a dynamically-typed imperative-style programming language, similar to Pascal in some ways, with interfaces to other languages, such as C, C#, Java, MATLAB, and Visual Basic, as well as Microsoft Excel. The language supports MathML, a W3C format used to represent and interpret mathematical expressions, including displaying them in webpages.

Development on Maple began at the University of Waterloo in 1980. The university was considering the purchase of a computer powerful enough to run Macsyma, one of the oldest general-purpose computer algebra systems. Rather than make that purchase, they decided to develop a computer algebra system that would run on lower-cost computers.

The first version of Maple came out in December of 1980, although the language was first demonstrated in 1982. Within a year, more than fifty universities had installed Maple on their machines.

In 1984, the University of Waterloo arranged for Watcom Products to license and distribute a commercial version of the language. In 1988, Waterloo Maple was formed to manage the distribution of the software. Operating as Maplesoft, the company conducts most of the development of the language and algebraic system today, although university research labs around the world also contribute to its continued development.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, versions were released for the Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows, both of which included a graphical user interface.

Between 1995 and 2005, Maple lost a large part of its market share to competitors and, In 2009, Maple and Maplesoft were acquired by Cybernet Systems, a Japanese software retailer.

The Maple engine is used in other products created by Maplesoft, including Moebius, an online testing suite, as well as MapleNet, MapleSim, and the Maple Quantum Chemistry Toolbox.

The Maple programming language and computing system is the focus of resources listed in this guide. Software tools designed to facilitate Maple programming are also appropriate here, as are any other implementations of the language, guides, tutorials, user groups, or forums.



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