Maxima is a computer algebra system comparable to commercial systems like Mathematica and Maple. It emphasizes symbolic mathematical computation: algebra, trigonometry, calculus, and much more.

For example, Maxima solves x^2-r*x-s^2-r*s=0 giving the symbolic results [x=r+s, x=-s].

Maxima can calculate with exact integers and fractions, native floating-point and high-precision big floats.

Maxima has user-friendly front-ends, an on-line manual, plotting commands, and numerical libraries. Users can write programs in its native programming language, and many have contributed useful packages in a variety of areas over the decades.

Maxima is GPL-licensed and largely written in Common Lisp. Executables can be downloaded for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android; source code is also available. An active community maintains and extends the system.

Maxima is widely used: annual direct downloads exceed 300,000. Many other users receive it through secondary distribution.


  • Specialized in symbolic operations but offering numerical capabilities too.
  • Can be accessed programmatically and extended, as the underlying Lisp can be called from it.
  • Complete programming language with ALGOL-like syntax but Lisp-like semantics.
  • Arbitrary-precision integers.
  • Rational numbers of sizes limited only by machine memory.
  • Arbitrarily large floating-point numbers ("bfloats").

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Follow Maxima -- GPL CAS based on DOE-MACSYMA

Maxima -- GPL CAS based on DOE-MACSYMA Web Site

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Additional Project Details


English, Portuguese, Spanish

Intended Audience

Science/Research, Education, End Users/Desktop, Engineering

User Interface

X Window System (X11), Win32 (MS Windows), Console/Terminal, Tk

Programming Language

Lisp, C, Tcl