Science is the effort of trying to understand how the physical world works. From observation and experimentation, science uses physical evidence of natural phenomena to compile data and analyze the collated information. Science really prospers and advances when individuals share the results of their experiments with others in the scientific community. There is a certain logic that scientific software should therefore be released in a freely distributable environment.
To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 42 high quality Linux scientific applications, covering a broad spectrum of uses. There’s a mix of graphical and console based applications included. Hopefully, there will be something of interest for all types of users.
Now, let’s explore the 42 scientific applications at hand. For each title we have compiled its own portal page, providing a screenshot of the software in action (where appropriate), a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, together with links to relevant resources and reviews.
|FreeMat||Rapid engineering and scientific prototyping and data processing|
|K3DSurf||Visualize and manipulate multidimensional surfaces|
|Octave||High-level language, primarily intended for numerical computations|
|Scilab||Numerical computational package|
|Axiom||For research and development of mathematical algorithms|
|Mathomatic||Fast and easy-to-use console mode Computer Algebra System|
|Maxima||System for the manipulation of symbolic and numerical expressions|
|PARI/GP||Designed for fast computations in number theory|
|Sage||Integrates an included distribution of specialized mathematics software|
|PSPP||Free replacement of the proprietary program, SPSS|
|R||Environment for statistical computing and graphics|
|Gnuplot||Command-driven interactive function plotting program|
|EMBOSS||The European Molecular Biology Open Software Suite|
|GROMACS||Molecular dynamics simulator, with building and analysis tools|
|VMD||Displays, animates, and analyzes large biomolecular systems|
|Avogadro||Advanced molecular editor|
|Gabedit||Graphical user interface to computational chemistry packages|
|GAMESS||General ab initio quantum chemistry package|
|Psi4||Ab initio quantum chemistry software designed for efficient, high-accuracy simulations|
|MPQC||Computes the properties of molecules, ab initio|
|Open Babel||Converts and manipulates chemical data files|
|PyMOL||OpenGL molecular graphics system written in Python|
|CompHEP||Automatic computations in High Energy Physics|
|Gerris||Tool for generic numerical simulations of flows|
|Octopus||Real-space, real-time implementation of TDDFT|
|OpenFOAM||Facilitates the numerical solution of partial differential equations|
|ROOT||Solves the data analysis challenges of high-energy physics|
|Celestia||Real-time space simulation|
|KStars||Desktop planetarium for KDE|
|Skychart||Prepare different sky maps for a particular observation|
|Stellarium||A virtual planetarium|
|IRAF||Image Reduction and Analysis Facility|
|Elmer||Multiphysical simulation software|
|Qucs||Integrated circuit simulator|
|GRASS||Geographic Resources Analysis Support System|
|Quantum GIS||Create, visualise, query and analyse geospatial data|
|SAGA||Analysis of spatial data|
|uDig||Spatial data viewer/editor|
|gretl||Regression, Econometric and Time-Series Library|
|Kile||User-friendly LaTeX source editor and TeX shell and KDE|
|LyX||Advanced open source document processor|
|TeXmacs||WYSIWYW scientific word processor|
|Read our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.
The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.
There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.