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This isn't technically a question, but I thought there would be enough interest in Mathematica here on M.SE.Meta to post it.

Wolfram made what I would call a gigantic move: they released the Wolfram Engine for Developers - for zero cost!

The idea of the Engine is primarily that you can call and run Wolfram Language commands from lots of different sources. I am not the kind of person to automate Mathematica, although I'm sure many others are. For me, the attraction is that you can download it for Windows, Mac, or Linux (might even run on a Raspberry Pi), install it, and run full-blown Mathematica commands on your own computer!

To be sure, the Wolfram Development Platform, now simply renamed to the Wolfram Cloud, has allowed free accounts, and you can execute Wolfram Language commands there in a sort of notebook. But the limitation was always that if you had a command taking a long time to execute, it might abort because of not having enough server time. Now that limitation is gone: you decide how long you want it to execute!

You still don't get palettes and other nice display-type things, as those are reserved for Mathematica proper. Moreover, the Wolfram Engine has an even more primitive display than the Cloud. However, you can always ask for the output in $\LaTeX$ format by doing //TeXForm at the end of a command.

I predict this will greatly enhance usage of the Wolfram Language and Mathematica, as it has always been so amazingly expensive, particularly for commercial users. According to the web page, you can use this engine for any development you want, but you can't use it in production. There is a Licensing FAQ page if you'd like more details. Also note that you're limited to two installs per Wolfram ID.

Highly recommended!

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  • $\begingroup$ Were did you learn about the removal of Wolfram Cloud server time limitation? I could not find it in the blog post. $\endgroup$ – Quazi Irfan May 30 at 3:14
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    $\begingroup$ @QuaziIrfan: The sense i make of the post is that an alternative to running commands in the Wolfram Cloud, where timeout still looms as a limitation, is now available by running Wolfram Engine for Developers on your own hardware. $\endgroup$ – hardmath May 30 at 5:05
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    $\begingroup$ @hardmath: You're quite right. It's the Engine installed on your local machine that gets you around the limitation. $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister May 30 at 13:11
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    $\begingroup$ @Threesidedcoin: Probably depends on what OS you're on. Off-hand, I'd say try the wolframscript, and see if you can get to In[1]: $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister May 30 at 15:24
  • $\begingroup$ @Threesidedcoin: Can you execute, say, Integrate[Exp[-x^2],{x,-Infinity,Infinity}]? It should give you Sqrt[Pi]. $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister May 30 at 15:58
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    $\begingroup$ @Threesidedcoin: That's probably a feature (or not) of your terminal, not of wolframscript. Try Ctrl-Shft-Insert. $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister May 30 at 17:03
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    $\begingroup$ Aside from palettes, to what extent is this not "Mathematica is free now"? $\endgroup$ – Mark S. May 31 at 23:22
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    $\begingroup$ There probably aren't Wolfram|Alpha calls, various distribution/production options, and a few other goodies. Probably can't create CDF's - not even sure you can do notebooks. $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister Jun 1 at 1:48
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    $\begingroup$ On your penultimate paragraph, it should be pointed out that the code is free to use for non-commercial purposes. $\endgroup$ – Theo Bendit Jun 6 at 5:29
  • $\begingroup$ @TheoBendit: Good suggestion, thanks! Done. $\endgroup$ – Adrian Keister Jun 6 at 16:26

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