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MATLAB in unexpected places

Asked by Walter Roberson on 5 Apr 2011
Latest activity Commented on by George Horne on 6 Oct 2014

This topic is for unexpected or bizarre or humorous references to MATLAB. Specific citations would be appreciated.

1 Comment

George Horne on 6 Oct 2014

I basically use Matlab for Financial graph presentation makings and it is very useful for me to communicate with client. Our company is working on payroll processing outsourcing and Matlab Simulator is good source for us.

Walter Roberson


22 Answers

Answer by Kaustubha Govind on 7 Apr 2011

"Matlab" in Hindi literally stands for "meaning" - although it's pronounced Muth-lub (both u's pronounced as in the English word "hut").

1 Comment

Andrew Newell on 7 Apr 2011

You could start pronouncing it that way in Mathworks, and see if it catches on!

Kaustubha Govind
Answer by Matt J on 5 Jul 2013
Edited by Matt J on 18 Sep 2013

At the company I work for, I sometimes provide people with various MATLAB-compiled standalone utilities for their work. When I told him it was MATLAB, one of the people here, who was apparently unfamiliar with The Mathworks and its products, concluded that MATLAB itself was my invention and that I had named MATLAB after myself (because my name is Matt......Matt-Lab......get it?).


Chad on 4 Sep 2013

could you elaborate on 'MATLAB-compiled standalone utilities'? I recently developed a spectral analysis tool for my company as an intern and I am curious how one would go about implementing this on dedicated hardware to be used in the field (middle of the ocean) without needing a matlab license

Walter Roberson on 5 Sep 2013

I think Matt means programs built using MATLAB Compiler. The startup icon would be the MATLAB logo.

If you want to develop for dedicated hardware you are more likely going to want to look at MATLAB Coder, or Simulink Coder, possibly with some of the extension toolboxes like Fixed Point Toolbox or HDL Coder.

Matt J
Answer by Walter Roberson on 5 Apr 2011

High concentrations of cadmium and arsenic have been found in Matlab


The original article is no longer at that link, but the scientific study can be found at


Walter Roberson on 6 Apr 2011

And for those of you who haven't read the link and might be wondering: No, it is not a joke: it is a serious report about a real problem.

Sean de Wolski on 6 Apr 2011

Doe that mean that those of us who consume a lot of Matlab have to be worried if we become nauseous or develop abdominal pain?

Matt Tearle on 7 Apr 2011

Better not tell the people in the "I hate MATLAB" facebook group! They probably already believe that MATLAB causes abdominal pain.

Walter Roberson
Answer by Sean de Wolski on 5 Apr 2011

At my University someone has a car with "MATLAB" as their license plate text. I'm not positive who it is, though I have my guesses (that I'm sure some of you can deduce by looking at my University). As far as a reference/citation, I don't think whoever owns that car would appreciate their license plate shown all over the internet.


Matt Fig on 5 Apr 2011

Of course, we already know what the license plate says... I am guessing it is Dr. D.H. or Dr. B.L.

Duane Hanselman on 8 Jun 2011

I don't know who Dr. B. L is, but my license plate has been "MATLAB" for about a decade now. :-) I started using "Classic MATLAB" on the mainframe in graduate school in 1983 and was one of the first purchasers of PC-MATLAB in very early 1986. Jack Little answered the phone as he was tech support back then. I wrote a couple books on MATLAB. Duane Hanselman

Sean de Wolski
Answer by Andrew Newell on 6 Apr 2011

And let's not forget the famous musical group DJ Matlab!


Walter Roberson on 6 Apr 2011

Cool DJ logo!

Matt Tearle on 6 Apr 2011

You, sir, have won today's internets by 7 wickets to love in the 4th hole of the 3rd chukka.

Andrew Newell on 6 Apr 2011

I'm glad ... I guess.

Andrew Newell
Answer by Arnaud Miege on 7 Apr 2011

I like this one from this blog:


1 Comment

Sean de Wolski on 7 Apr 2011

I think it's kind of funny that he refers to it as a mesh. Isn't it a surface?

Arnaud Miege
Answer by Matt Fig on 5 Apr 2011

I do see the logo on other vehicles once in a while. If you see the logo on the back of a silver VW EuroVan with Idaho plates, look at the driver. You may just spot a bearded man wearing a MATLAB hat. Don't hesitate to wave!


Star Strider on 23 Apr 2014

Never heard of it. What is it?

Sean de Wolski on 23 Apr 2014

Like this, only it says MathWorks. I'll take a picture of mine when I'm back in MA

Image Analyst on 23 Apr 2014

I don't have it. I don't recall seeing it as an option before. Reminds me of a mousepad - do you have a MATLAB one of those? Like a thin neoprene and fabric one? I'd take one of those.

Matt Fig
Answer by Andrew Newell on 6 Apr 2011

I Hate MATLAB. (3,873 people like this.)

You can choose between I Hate MATLAB, I hate "MATLAB", We Hate MATLAB, I F#$*ing Hate Matlab, or I Hate MATLAB and LABVIEW!!!

Maybe we'll start to see things like:

I Hate MATLAB but I hate those jerks in the I hate "MATLAB" group even more!


Paulo Silva on 7 Apr 2011

There are many I hate Excel groups on facebook!

Andrew Newell on 7 Apr 2011

That presents some tough choices: Do I sign up for "I hate Excel", "I hate Excel!", "I hate Excel!!", "I hate Microsoft Excel", or "we all hate microsoft excel"?

Matt Tearle on 7 Apr 2011

Judean People's Front?! We're the People's Front of Judea!

Andrew Newell
Answer by Andrew Newell on 7 Feb 2012

From the Acknowledgements section of Spectral methods in MATLAB by Lloyd Nicholas Trefethen:

"... there is a brass plaque on my office wall, given to me in 1998 by The MathWorks Inc., which reads: FIRST ORDER FOR MATLAB, February 7, 1985, Ordered by Professor Nick Trefethen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology."


Andrew Newell
Answer by Walter Roberson on 6 Apr 2011

Someone ran a book comparison between "MATLAB for Control Engineers",

and "Bakugan Battle Brawlers: Dan and Drago"

Wonder which one they bought?

 "My Control Systems Toolbox deactivates your Battle Transfer Function!"
 "Oh yah? Well my Image Toolbox demotes you to D-list celebrity!"


Walter Roberson
Answer by Andrew Newell on 6 Apr 2011

I can't resist posting a link to a picture from the site Walter linked to:


Andrew Newell on 8 Jun 2011

Found - using a Firefox addon.

Walter Roberson on 8 Jun 2011

Perhaps edit in the new link?

Andrew Newell on 8 Jun 2011

The image didn't display reliably on this site, so I have posted the link to the archive instead.

Andrew Newell
Answer by Andrew Newell on 6 Apr 2011

Matlab - Quality Custom Finishing: "For more than three decades, Matlab has set the standard for quality custom paint and powder finishes ... Woman owned and operated."


Andrew Newell
Answer by Walter Roberson on 6 Apr 2011


bym on 6 Apr 2011

I concur, if it were an answer, I'd vote for it

Walter Roberson on 6 Apr 2011

Kaustubha, if you would do the honors so you can receive the credit ?

Walter Roberson
Answer by Walter Roberson on 11 May 2011

Futuristic MATLAB in a film? See the review of Stealth (2005) that Mike Verdone wrote.


Walter Roberson
Answer by John Tillinghast on 17 Aug 2011

There is a town in Bangladesh where many studies have been done on diarrheal disease:


Some of these are pretty mathematical papers, but I doubt that is why the town keeps getting chosen.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson on 17 Aug 2011

That is the same town where the high levels of Cadmium and arsenic were found in the water table; a high concentration of those metals in the body could cause some pretty nasty effects :(

John Tillinghast
Answer by Richard Brown on 16 Apr 2012

On an episode of Harry's law (I can't remember which one), Tommy Jefferson (a fast-talking lawyer) boasts about a number of lawsuits he's won against various big corporations. It went something like this:

"Amazon, Microsoft, Matlab, ..."

Which was pretty amusing


Richard Brown
Answer by Walter Roberson on 20 Sep 2012


Image Analyst on 20 Sep 2012

I imagine the picture for "WALTER DISCOVERS MATLAB" would show the kid a few tick marks to the left.

Image Analyst on 22 Sep 2012

And I wonder how this got on there...

Walter Roberson on 22 Sep 2012

It was only one Nickelback song!! And all I said was that it wasn't as bad as everyone made it out to be!

Walter Roberson
Answer by Walter Roberson on 5 Jul 2013

Playing Cricket: Physicists Cast New Light On Spin-Bowling
As the Ashes series gets underway next week, a pair of brothers from Australia have been exploring the physics behind the spin of a cricket ball.
Garry Robinson said: "Our results show that the effects on a spinning ball are not purely due to the wind holding the ball up, since a reversal of wind direction can cause the ball to dip instead. These trajectory changes are due to the combination of the wind and the spin of the ball.
"The effects of spin in the presence of a cross-wind, and how to fully exploit it, may or may not be completely appreciated by spin bowlers. Either way, we have provided a mathematical model for the situation, although the model of course awaits detailed comparison with observations."
Once the equations were constructed, they were numerically solved using a computer software program called MATLAB; the solutions were then used to create illustrative examples for cricket.


Walter Roberson
Answer by Luuk van Oosten on 15 Jul 2014

There is this guy who hates around everything about MATLAB. Pretty fun to read about his frustration and anger.


Luuk van Oosten
Answer by Doug Hull on 16 Sep 2014

The is a MATLAB box in the background in the movie Contact when Elie runs in after hearing first message.


Doug Hull

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