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User survey: What version of M are you using?

Posted 3 months ago
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Hello everyone,

I created a survey to try to determine what versions of Mathematica people are most commonly using. Please fill it out, and forward the survey to any friends or colleagues who also use Mathematica.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdmiNCQH5mBKYWAf9V6DzcuidsRRqX3LOg2_C6Hr0eKDxunog/viewform

Motivation:

This information will be useful for package authors to decide what versions of Mathematica to support. For example, my MaTeX and IGraph/M packages still support Mathematica 10.0. I would like to know how many users are left out if I make e.g. M11.1 the minimum requirement. I believe other package authors would find these statistics useful too. Similar statistics are available e.g. for Android versions.

If enough people respond, results will be posted in this thread in a couple of weeks.

8 Replies

I have received 25 responses so far. Hopefully, this reply will bump the post to the front page so that more people who are not daily visitors of Wolfram Community will have the chance to see it and fill it (otherwise the sample would be quite biased towards regulars of this site).

This is the third and final bump before posting the final results. Currently I have 41 responses.

Link in OP is dead.

Link in OP is dead.

I just tried it (also in a private browsing session), and the link seems to work. Could you try again please?

Is anyone else having trouble opening the survey page?

Yes, the link is working now for me, too.

57 responses were received so far. I should note in advance that I do not believe the sample (i.e. visitors to this site) to be representative of all users. Keep this in mind, and draw your own conclusions.

Mathematica versions

enter image description here

84% are on the latest version, 7% on 9 or earlier, 3.5% on 10.x and 5% on 11.x (excluding the latest).

Operating systems

For the following question, keep in mind that multiple answers were possible. Everyone who ticked the cloud or Raspberry Pi also ticked a desktop platform.

enter image description here

Using packages

Only about a third of the responders use packages ...

enter image description here

... even though most of them have tried packages at some point.

enter image description here

For how long have you been using Mathematica?

Most responders are long-time users. This, to me, seems to indicate that the sample may be heavily biased. Especially with the recent popularity of high-level languages (what physics student learns C or Fortran as first language anymore?), I would expect most users to have started with Mathematica recently. However, new users may not be frequenting this forum. A healthy and growing system should have many "fresh" users, so hopefully this result is not representative of the broader Mathematica userbase.

enter image description here

What about any correlation between regular package use and the for how long a responder has been using Mathematica? Here's a breakdown for the answer to "Do you regularly use third-party packages?"

  • used M for 10 or more years: <|"Yes" -> 11, "No" -> 19|>
  • For 6-9 years: <|"Yes" -> 2, "No" -> 8|>
  • For 5 or fewer years: <|"Yes" -> 8, "No" -> 9|>

It would appear that people who are newer to Mathematica are more likely to use packages, but the dataset is too small to draw reliable conclusions.


I am not going to publish the full dataset to protect the responders' privacy, but if you have any questions / requests, I will try to satisfy them.


I have also written to Wolfram Support to ask if WRI has any statistics on the current share of various versions. I have not yet received a response, and frankly I will be surprised if my request is not refused. While I am sure that WRI collects such data (remember that Mathematica regularly contacts Wolfram servers to check for paclet updates, so it is technically possible), I can imagine numerous reasons why they would not want to share such statistics publicly. However, if they do respond, and if they do agree to sharing this information, I will post it here.


I will keep the survey running for a little longer and will link to it from other websites too. The date of each response is recorded, so it will be possible to differentiate between the old and new responses.

Posted 2 months ago

Thanks for setting this up. Is there any way this could also be posted somewhere on Meta on the Mathematica StackExchange? That might get a slightly larger user base/less skewed towards the Wolfram fans, even if it will still be biased toward long-term/power users.

M.SE has a lot more traffic than W|C, but unfortunately it's not suitable for posting surveys. Meta has much less traffic than the main site. Mostly it is the regulars who visit. So the sample will certainly be biased. This is why I originally chose W|C to post the survey.

For the second round, it seems like a good idea to also advertise on Meta, so I did.

Now idea: What might be better is placing an actual community ad (didn't think of this before). That will show on the main M.SE site!

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