[Scilab-users] cotg and acot

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fmiyara fmiyara
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[Scilab-users] cotg and acot


Dear all,

Is there any reason why the cotangent function is called cotg in Scilab, instead of cot, being cot a Matlab replacement, while the hyerbolic cotangent is called coth?

I wonder why this function doesn't follow the tacit rule that trigonometric functions are notated with three-letter names and is somewhat inconsistent also with the names used for the hypebolic versions.

If there is some difference in the result of Scilab and Matlab cotangent, probably the Matlab replacement should be called mtlb_
cot, or something like that.

Regards,

Federico Miyara  

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Samuel GOUGEON Samuel GOUGEON
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Re: cotg and acot

Hello,

Le 23/09/2019 à 16:59, Federico Miyara a écrit :

Dear all,

Is there any reason why the cotangent function is called cotg in Scilab, instead of cot, being cot a Matlab replacement, while the hyerbolic cotangent is called coth?

I wonder why this function doesn't follow the tacit rule that trigonometric functions are notated with three-letter names


There is no such rule, even tacit. Shortness is much weaker than clarity, and to me cot is really unclear (and too short).

The shorter are reserved keywords, the more probable are conflicts with custom current variables. So this "g" is welcome.

Regards
Samuel


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fmiyara fmiyara
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Re: cotg and acot


Dear Samuel,
 
I wonder why this function doesn't follow the tacit rule that trigonometric functions are notated with three-letter names

There is no such rule, even tacit. Shortness is much weaker than clarity, and to me cot is really unclear (and too short).

There is, indeed, a rule. It is included in ISO Standard 8000 Part 2 (Mathematical signs and symbols to be used in natural sciences and technology), clause 13, and states that the symbol for "cotangent of x" is cot x, and that ctg should not be used (it says nothing about cotg, I acknowledge, but preference is clearly for cot).

I don't see why cot would be unclear.

The shorter are reserved keywords, the more probable are conflicts with custom current variables. So this "g" is welcome.

The same would apply to sin or cos or to any of the short or long function names. I think the basic knowledge of common symbols is the responsibility of the user. If a user decided to use cot as a custom variable and then wants to use the same symbol as the trigonometric function (without clearing first the variable) there is a programming style problem.

The only problem I see with cot would be a backward compatibility one, which could be handled by keeping cotg during some versions and, if there is any difference between the Matlab cot and the Scilab cot/cotg, introducing a mtlb_cot function as happens with other functions used in the matlab to scilab conveersion tool. 

Regards,

Federico Miyara






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fujimoto2005 fujimoto2005
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Re: cotg and acot

Dear Federico,

Even if there is such a rule, I think that it is not useful to follow the
rule mechanically.
For example, the integral function is "intg" in scilab.
If we follow strictly the rules, it becomes "int" which is confused with the
integer (although int is not used as  a keyword in scilab). The "intg" is
easier to understand it means integral.
I think it is a good way from the practical viewpoint not to limit us to
follow three characters rule.

Best regards,
Masahiro Fujimoto



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fmiyara fmiyara
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Re: cotg and acot


Dear Masahiro,

I accept that in some cases it might be not convenient to follow a rule, but I think the cotangent is not the case because of 1) a long tradition acknowledged in an international standard, 2) consistency, 3) aesthetics, 4) ease of pronounciation, 5) virtual impossibility of confusion (indeed, try a web search of "definition of cot in math" (*)). The other meanings of cot have nothing to do with math.

Regards,

Federio Miyara


(*) After three and a half pages of links where cot is the cotangent symbol, I've found this page:
http://www.memidex.com/ctn+trigonometric-function, where the most serious source, the Collins dictionary, accepts also cotan and ctn as abbreviations



On 01/10/2019 03:34, fujimoto2005 wrote:
Dear Federico,

Even if there is such a rule, I think that it is not useful to follow the
rule mechanically.
For example, the integral function is "intg" in scilab.
If we follow strictly the rules, it becomes "int" which is confused with the
integer (although int is not used as  a keyword in scilab). The "intg" is
easier to understand it means integral.
I think it is a good way from the practical viewpoint not to limit us to
follow three characters rule.

Best regards,
Masahiro Fujimoto



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