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# PTC Prime (again)2

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## PTC Prime (again)

(OP)
I was just given a quote for 2 floating licenses of PTC Prime 7 for 3575 CAD (2950 USD)
<Gulp>

For comparison, it's just 670 USD for a fixed install.
A complimentary install of MC15 is no longer in the bundle.

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

That's an annual subscription too! A perpertual license used to cost the same.

Consider Prime Express, the only thing you absolutely can't do is solving. Most other functions can be manually created. See the below forum post with a sheet that contains "premium features" manually created in Prime Express. Btw, version 5 is the last without a watermark all the way across the page.

https://community.ptc.com/sejnu66972/attachments/s...

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

I dropped MathCAD this year, this being one of many reasons.

It's no longer a cost effective maths tool. There is nothing inside Prime that justifies the expense.

--Scott
www.aerornd.com

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

I've been using SMath for a decade and other than a couple of minor issues (really aggravating at times, but that's me) it's a great program... I can quickly 'build' new programs by 'cutting and pasting' from earlier programs.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

(OP)
IRstuff,
I'm using SMath and I agree that it's the leading alternative. But I have limited satisfaction, and multiple obstacles to use in my workplace:
• frequent breakages during software updates
• very limited graphing capability
• non-help received for most of my questions on the user's forum
• absence of a User's Guide
The absence of a UG means that I will likely never learn to use it proficiently, nor can I honestly expect any of my coworkers to do either. Without collaboration with my colleagues, it's just a personal "toy". The term "user's guide" refers to a book written with the intent of instructing users to use all features of the software, tending to be 500 pages or so, and not an intro that some grad student typed up on a weekend.

Dik,
On the customization subject, would you be willing to share which plugins you recommend and use most often in SMath?

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

#### Quote (multiple obstacles to use in my workplace)

and a couple of others...

Occasionally arrays don't work like they should and data does not work with units in them (not consistent). I often use arrays where the columns may have several different data types (same data type within the array column). I'm not sure the program was written with this capability. This includes doing many calculations within the array.

If moving block data up quickly through the program (I often 'cut and paste') the program freezes and all work is lost and unrecoverable. This includes the last saved data. I work around this by keeping two copies saved every 5 minutes or so with a '_00' added to the program name.

I work around the little hiccups thinking that it may not be the program, but the manner I use it. Other than Libreoffice, I think SMath is my most used program.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

(OP)
Greg,
"ahem"
The wiki is missing some items. Suggested additions for the special features that they should highlight:

• To create a legend for your plot, the configuration of each trace will require a considerable amount of clicking through menus. We, the creators of Smath have indestructible mouses are are not concerned about wearing them or our knuckles out.
• In rare cases where you want to plot a function on the horizontal axis and the independent values on the vertical axis, don't. We, the creators of Smath find that blasphemous.
• The functions you spent hours creating in body of the Smath analysis are useless when you need a graph. Just start all over again when it's time to prepare your graph. We, the creators of Smath have endless fun typing the same thing all over in numerous intricate ways.
• Once you are done, make sure the graph-defined functions have some flair because you will be forced to look at them forever. We the creators of SMath love math and will force you to look at it. ALL OF IT.
• We just love the word "Augment". It's so cool that the mathematicians of a bygone era chose to use it formally in linear algebra. We the creators of SMath love it so much that we made it almost impossible to make a graph without using "Augment". You don't have to thank us, really.
• If the reader of your report complains that they have already read your work and don't need to see it reprinted all over again below a graph, or they whine that now it's in a different form which must be puzzled over for a while until they figure it out or are told that it's a crutch for the program rather than use the "f(x)" that was already defined in the text to generate the function... well, that's their fault for not falling in love with redundancy at first glance. They should fall in love with redundancy. What's not to love about redundancy when one first glances it? We, the creators of Smath have already explained that we love to do things repeatedly and redundantly and repeatedly.
• Plots zoom out by a factor of 20000x when you scroll your mouse wheel over them. We the creators of Smath are proud of this feature, despite mouse-wheel also being an EXTREMELY common page scroll action. We, the creators of Smath thought it would be fun to provide a way to wipe 8 settings in your plot menu all at once, even if you spent several minutes selecting and setting them just a moment ago. You can have all that same fun setting them again!

I guess, since it's a wiki, I'll have to enter these myself...

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

No one uses BlockPad here?

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

It is in active development, which I find refreshing...
For basic calcs, it seems pretty good and I'm thrilled with the level of support.

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

I like Mathcad Prime the best (as long as the company pays for it). Agree, several things can be improved, and the developer is very slow working on them. Arrays and the Solver do miracles in MathCad. No way I can reproduce many of the longer calculations in SMath. I tried. But... for everyday structural calcs SMath or MathCad Express work wonderfully.

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

#### Quote (On the customization subject, would you be willing to share which plugins)

I'm not sure what most of them do... but have accumulated these in the last decade. I don't consciously use them:

Area Region
ComboBoxListRegion
ExcelFiles
HTMLFileType
ImageFileType
MathRegion
PictureRegion
PlotRegion
SmathFileType
SpecialFunctions
StandardToolboxButtions
StructuralShapeProperty Extractor
TextRegion
ViewerFileType
WriterRegion
XlsxImportExport
XMCDFileType

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

#### Quote ((as long as the company pays for it))

There's just me sweating over my abacus... no one to talk to, most of the time... I prefer that anyway...

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

I am still using MC13 because MC14 ruined the symbolic solver. Even so, MC13's solver could use improvement as it may be able to solve a set of equations but the answer will not be optimal. To make Mathcad's solver better it needs to pass sub expressions back to the solver to optimize the sub expressions. Fortunately I am good at math can can optimize Mathcad's solutions down to the most simple terms. Mathcad's symbolic solver needs to be recursive. Sometimes I need to copy a sub expression and then ask Mathcad to simplify the sub expression.

I have what looks like a simple problem that I call the problem from hell. It has only 6 equations and 6 unknowns. It has to do with generating a motion profile for position, velocity and acceleration as a function of time. Way back in in the early 2000s I posted this problem on a newsgroup sci.math.symbolic. The problem could be solved but the solution stretched crossed over 100 pages. Obviously the solution wasn't usuable.
I even bought Mathematica. Mathematica's solution was long too to be usable also. I had to hand optimize to generate a usable solution that could be executed in a motion controller.

Peter Nachtwey
Delta Computer Systems
http://www.deltamotion.com
http://forum.deltamotion.com/
IFPE Hall of Fame Member

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

(OP)

#### Quote (IRstuff)

Sure, getting a call from the CEO and founder is a bit different.

That happened to me when I started using Onshape about 10 years ago, and it's really taken off in recent years.
Things are a bit uncertain now that they've been bought by... Uhhh... error: circular reference.

IFRs
I haven't checked in on Blockpad in a while. Given the ongoing development there may be some interesting surprises.
I will maintain my position that despite my own comfort with many varieties of software, I can't expect it of others.
Many of my colleagues would grumble at the imposition of an elaborate piece of software that disrupts their tried-and-true methods, unless it can guarantee results and improvements that they will value and trust. Break any of that, and it's just a toy.

How many of you would shrug and say "no biggie" if suddenly Autodesk broke something fundamental in AutoCAD, like blocks or polylines?

Dik
Thanks for the list. I'll compare it to what's installed here. Does anyone have anything nice to say about plotting graphs in SMath? Or Prime for that matter (the actual subject of this thread)?

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

Sorry, I don't do graphs... just output numbers. I use the plotting for the programs for section shape welds and after a bit of 'screwin' around they functioned perfectly... just a matter of scale if the sections are large.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

from upfrontezine...

"Maple Flow is a very recently released (2021) direct competitor to MathCAD from Canadian company MapleSoft. It appears to me to be aimed directly as a competitor to MathCAD, as it has a very similar interface and works in the same way.

Maple Flow seems to be priced at $2,390 for a single perpetual commercial license. Educational licenses are available. maplesoft.com/products/mapleflow" Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better? -Dik ### RE: PTC Prime (again) Prime fixed a number of issues with MC's graphing (in)capabilities Near as I can tell, MC's graphing remained unchanged since before MC8. I invariably use Excel for graphing anything I calculate in MC and need to present the data. If I were to use MCP, I'd likely do the same, since its basic XY graphing is still rudimentary, compared to Excel's. Both MC and MCP's 3D graphs are actually superior to Excel's in being manipulatable in real time; I think Excel had that capability eons ago, but lost it somewhere along the line. TTFN (ta ta for now) I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm ### RE: PTC Prime (again) #### Quote (dik) Maple Flow seems to be priced at$2,390 for a single perpetual commercial license.

How much is MathCad?

#### Quote (IRstuff)

Both MC and MCP's 3D graphs are actually superior to Excel's in being manipulatable in real time; I think Excel had that capability eons ago, but lost it somewhere along the line.

What sort of manipulation in real time are you talking about? I'm not aware of any lost graphing capabilities in Excel (not that I'm an expert in Excel 3D graphs; I hardly ever use them).

Doug Jenkins
Interactive Design Services
http://newtonexcelbach.wordpress.com/

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

In MC, you can drag the 3D graph and spin it around with your mouse; Excel used to do that a looong time ago, but now, you have to set angles directly and it updates very slooowly.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

IRstuff - OK, Microsoft really needs to fix the speed of graphics in Excel. Anything reasonably complex (chart or drawing object) updates at a speed that would have been considered painfully slow in the early 80's.

Doug Jenkins
Interactive Design Services
http://newtonexcelbach.wordpress.com/

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

#### Quote (How much is MathCad?)

See sparweb's initial post at the top of this thread... I don't know what he was purchasing.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

#### Quote (dik)

See sparweb's initial post at the top of this thread.

oops.

Thanks for the reminder :)

Doug Jenkins
Interactive Design Services
http://newtonexcelbach.wordpress.com/

### RE: PTC Prime (again)

Far cry from when it was \$99 list price

One option we've been exploring is buying fixed licenses, and then remote logons to use the programs. We've got the same issue with another software program that likewise has a huge jump in cost for floating license. At least, you still have the option of a perpetual install, for now.

TTFN (ta ta for now)
I can do absolutely anything. I'm an expert! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKorP55Aqvg
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies forum1529: Translation Assistance for Engineers Entire Forum list http://www.eng-tips.com/forumlist.cfm

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