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Auto completion and suggestions bar not available on PI?

Dear All,

I just received my first Raspberry Pi B+ a couple of days ago and started playing around with Mathematica (10.0.0, newest release retrieved by sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install wolfram-engine) using a SSH remote X-redirection via putty to a local Xming server on my Win7 notebook.

So far everything works great (even though of course not lightning fast on this tiny platform), with exception of the functionalities of the predicting interface (auto completion and suggestions bar) which seem to me not being available or turned off by default on the Pi.

Am I doing something wrong or is this a toll taken by the limited performance of the Pi, or maybe a side-effect of my X-windows redirection? I have much understanding that a free version of such a highly sophisticated software like Mathematica running on a low-end HW platform like the Pi must take some tolls, however, as the Pi is primarily targeted for educational reasons, especially the presence of the suggestions bar would be invaluable for discovering and learning the Wolfram Language!

Regardless of the availability or unavailability of the predictive interface, I like to point out that I really appreciate Wolfram's step to provide Mathematica for free for educational and personal usage on the Pi! I wish I had such a tremendous powerful math tool available when I studied computer science and physics some three decades ago! :) As Stephen said in a (TED?) speech I saw about 1-2 years ago, our mathematics education system urgently needs to be revised in a way so that pupils and students already learn in very early stages how to USE math to solve REAL LIVE problems rather than to be just "tortured" by been forced to reiteratively over and over again pure mathematical mechanics, which can be performed today by CAS in a ten-thousands split of the time even very talented humans would need on a piece of paper. That's waste of time, and even worse, waste of talent. Mathematica and Wolfram Language provides a way out of this, like sewing machines revolutionized the mode of operation of tailors just about 150 years ago, Or like Johannes Gutenberg changed public enlightenment forever with his invention of the printing press. To Stephan and the entire Wolfram team, thank you for this!

Regards Sven

POSTED BY: Sven Wiebus
8 Replies

Control-K should trigger auto-completion, but it crashes the front end on the Raspberry Pi.

POSTED BY: Szabolcs Horvát

Cool. I reported the crash to developers. I may ask you by email for details.

POSTED BY: Bruce Miller

I tried "Ctrl+k" but still have no auto completion.

POSTED BY: Sven Wiebus

The "ctrl+k" option completion uses assets that do not exist in the Raspberry Pi version of the FrontEnd due to performance and package size concerns. If you update to the latest build then the menu option should be removed, so the crash should not occur.

POSTED BY: Alex Newman

Thank you Alex for your fast reply! And the same is also (sad but) true for the suggestions bar?

POSTED BY: Sven Wiebus

Could you maybe retain the old, v8 style auto-completion at least? It shouldn't take much space: it has existed for as long as I can remember, in versions of Mathematica that weren't any bigger than the current RPi version.

POSTED BY: Szabolcs Horvát

This is an issue we've actually put a lot of thought into, but it's more complicated than it seems. There are many potential problems we could run into either moving forward or backward with the FrontEnd codebase. The issues are exacerbated because the Raspberry Pi is a very modern Linux system software-wise despite having hardware that's (in some ways) more comparable to much older machines.

In order to avoid opening up corner cases, we've settled on tracking the Mathematica 10 codebase closely and using configuration to disable features (and removing some things from the layout). A lot of the improvements in prediction did come with some cost to the layout size.

We originally thought people would use the terminal interface (type "wolfram" on the command line) instead or use a text editor due to performance, but the Mathematica FrontEnd carriers a lot of appeal. So, we're working on some new developments that should make things much faster and more flexible on systems like the Raspberry Pi. If we can get there, I think we'll try to make things as friendly as possible.

Hopefully, in time, we can justify to our users why we're investing our time moving forward instead of backward on these things.

POSTED BY: Alex Newman

I was under the impression that simply disabling auto-completion in v9 (and maybe v10) restored the old, v8-style Command-K auto-completion. Now I realize that I was wrong: this is not what happens.

POSTED BY: Szabolcs Horvát
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