Thursday, November 22, 2007

Goodby, Mathworks

I uninstalled Matlab on my laptop today. I love the product itself, but hate the activation mechanism. I had already gone through it when I installed the student version of Matlab on Windows then again when I reinstalled with Linux on my laptop. But for some reason or another my activation was invalid when I recently checked it. Maybe I shifted around a partition or maybe I just sneezed the wrong way.

I couldn't validate old copies of Matlab or install new copies. I went through Mathwork's web interface for managing activations and it didn't help. So I filled out a support ticket to Mathworks to help me resolve this. In the meanwhile, I started working on an alternate way of doing my project. Three days later, an email arrives from Mathworks asking for the MAC addresses of my computers. I never bothered to send that information.

If I wanted to be treated like I was a dishonest thief, I would have borrowed a pirated copy of Matlab from any one of many students who have downloaded one off the net. All I need for this software to do is work - to do useful things for me. Now I don't need it because I already switched to a method that doesn't require Matlab or any solution like it. Even if I do need an application like Matlab again, there are alternatives that don't require me to waste time like this.

So goodbye, Mathworks. It was fun while it lasted.


matt said...


maxjenrick said...

Good for you. I've been using Matlab for 15 years and I've finally had it with their worse-than-Microsoft licensing schemes (soon to get even worse in R2008a). I am an ECE faculty member at a private university that has lots of Matlab licenses, but I will be teaching Octave from now on.