LAPACK (Linear Algebra Package) is a library of routines that provides fast, robust algorithms for numerical linear algebra and matrix computations. Linear algebra functions and matrix operations in MATLAB® are built on LAPACK, and they continue to benefit from the performance and accuracy of its routines.

A Brief History

MATLAB started its life in the late 1970s as an interactive calculator built on top of LINPACK and EISPACK, which were the state-of-the-art Fortran subroutine libraries for matrix computation of the time. For many years MATLAB used translations to C of about a dozen Fortran subroutines from LINPACK and EISPACK.

In the year 2000, MATLAB migrated to using LAPACK, which is the modern replacement for LINPACK and EISPACK. It is a large, multi-author, Fortran library for numerical linear algebra. LAPACK was originally intended for use on supercomputers because of its ability to operate on several columns of a matrix at a time. The speed of LAPACK routines is closely connected to the speed of the Basic Linear Algebra Subroutines (BLAS). The BLAS version is typically hardware-specific and highly optimized.

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