I don't know if the following question is suitable for being asked on Math Stackexchange. Can someone please clarify?

I wish to use a software to compute the generators of the ring invariant under the action of a matrix group. I have been using SageMath, but I find that it is quite slow for my requirements. Are there any other free software available for download which can serve my purpose?

  • $\begingroup$ Are you using the online version, or the desktop version? The make for SageMath can take a long time to build, but that is in part because it does a lot of platform-specific optimizations. It's been awhile since I did it, but I remember that it took several hours on a single CPU machine, maybe just less than a day. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    May 15, 2016 at 20:42
  • $\begingroup$ I am using the desktop version. $\endgroup$
    – MathManiac
    May 16, 2016 at 9:11

1 Answer 1


I think it's perfectly on-topic, as evidenced by tags like , , , and the number of well-received questions with said tags.

I do think it would be good to have some additional context. Perhaps

  • Broadly, how your code runs (i.e., the overall structure and the kind of function calls you make) and

  • What in particular seems to take a long time (are you making thousands of such computations, are the objects involved really complicated, is the problem just computationally demanding in general?).

Maybe whatever you're doing is very straightforward in theory and there's no need for any of that (I have no idea). Otherwise, I imagine such context will help people judge whether any software alternatives really could outperform Sage "out of the box".

Another possibility is that somebody intimately familiar with CAS will know some tricks that make these computations feasible, on whatever software you wind up using (e.g., perhaps somebody has ideas in the vein of Stein's Sage for Power Users, like using Cython or something).

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ I would rather emphasize that some context about the mathematical problem to be solved is key to being on-topic. The issues of optimizing performance of a particular package are more likely to be dismissed as off-topic than the prospects of finding competing software that can solve the essential mathematical problem. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    May 15, 2016 at 20:49
  • $\begingroup$ @hardmath That's a very good point, I'm glad you bring that up -- the OP does say "my requirements" and they are definitely key. I do know that optimization questions are sometimes well-received and answer (see here for example, using GAP). At any rate, I subconsciously assumed the OP's primary concern is getting calculations done more quickly (as they seem to be able to do them now, just not quickly), not necessarily finding new software. $\endgroup$
    – pjs36
    May 15, 2016 at 21:03
  • $\begingroup$ It would be especially felicitous if there is a theoretical approach that works more rapidly. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    May 16, 2016 at 0:03
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ The existence of tags does not prove that questions are on topic. Even off topic questions need to be categorized (if anything so that they can be didn't and deleted sooner). I'm not saying it applies in this case, but please don't use the existence of tags a guideline... $\endgroup$ May 16, 2016 at 6:28

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