In a recent issue of The Scientist, I reviewed, in a very general way, the status of data mining and presentation software with specific reference to gene expression arrays. In the course of that effort it became clear to me that detailed reviews of some of the more well-known and widely used of these software packages would be useful. This is the first in a series of articles designed to explore these packages. It is my intention to use each of the applications reviewed in an analysis and presentation of expression array data.

Mathcad products have been in production since 1984 and currently are in wide use among engineers, physicists, and to a lesser extent chemists. Company estimates put their market share at 30-40% of the potential users in these disciplines.

Two features of Mathcad 8 are easy to appreciate immediately. The first is its total integrated compatibility with...

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