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Aldor is now free. Most of material below is only of historical interest.

Axiom is a sophisticated computer algebra system originally developed as an IBM research project. IBM sold Axiom to the Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG) who marketed it and continued its development. After NAG discontinued Axiom as a commercial product they generously released part of the Axiom source code under a free license. Axiom is now very usable and is currently being actively developed by an enthusiastic community. It is expected to be useful in research and education for quite some time.

The language used for writing Axiom libraries is called SPAD (short for Scratchpad, the original name of Axiom). While Axiom was still being developed by IBM, an improved language, Aldor, was created for writing Axiom libraries. While the Aldor compiler was originally part of the Axiom system, it became a separate project when NAG discontinued the sale of Axiom as a commercial product. The Aldor compiler was not part of Axiom when the Axiom sources were relicensed, and so is not currently included with Axiom.

Binaries for Aldor have been made freely available and the sources are available under a generous license. However, the license does not qualify as a free or open source license. While Axiom can still make use of Aldor as a library compiler (on those platforms where a suitable binary version is available), the lack of a free license for Aldor prohibits it from being a standard part of the Axiom open source distribution, and so nothing in the base Axiom system can depend on Aldor.

A free license for Aldor would allow it to become a standard part of Axiom, which would improve Axiom and make Aldor a more widespread language. A free license available as soon as possible would allow current development on Axiom to use Aldor.

We, the undersigned, respectfully request that the Aldor compiler be released under a free license at the earliest opportunity.


(The undersigned as noted in comments below.)

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Aldor is important for Axiom! --Bill Page, Thu, 19 Jan 2006 17:12:43 -0600 reply
Bill Page.

Seconded - the work involved in re-inventing the Aldor wheel would slow Axiom considerably --unknown, Thu, 19 Jan 2006 18:38:24 -0600 reply
Cliff Yapp

An Aldor compiler in Axiom would be a big benefit to Axiom. --belanger, Fri, 20 Jan 2006 17:48:06 -0600 reply
Jay Belanger

Martin Rubey

Aldor would also benefit from a wider user community

Andrey Grozin

Aldor and Axiom communities need to cooperate --Tim Daly, Sun, 22 Jan 2006 13:28:41 -0600 reply
The Aldor and Axiom communities need to cooperate. The current license restrictions on Aldor make this cooperation extremely difficult. There is a limited community of people who use these systems and we must make an effort to deliver our software in a way that makes it effective, simple, and synergistic. Opening the Aldor sources will allow people to use and improve the systems as the need arises. -- Tim Daly

Bob McElrath

Opening the Aldor source codes would greatly benefit to both Axiom and Aldor community.

-- Gaby

An integrated Axiom with a free Aldor would be great --unknown, Wed, 25 Jan 2006 16:40:39 -0600 reply
Having Axiom packaged with aldor for various linux distributions would make it easy to install and use them.
B Thomas

Grégory Vanuxem

The aldor language source would be very educational. --unknown, Wed, 25 Jan 2006 20:29:10 -0600 reply
It would be very educational to discover what was changed from Spad to Aldor, and why that makes Aldor a better language... (assuming that it is). The source to language implementations is very important to the future of the art and science of computer programming. It would be very gracious of you to release it to everyone, as part of the Axiom system.

Karl Hegbloom

Freeing Aldor --Stephen Watt, Thu, 26 Jan 2006 09:15:00 -0600 reply
Thank you to Bill Page for bringing this web site to my attention.

I am supportive of this movement, and have started discussions to move in this direction.

Stephen Watt

Active Aldor community --unknown, Thu, 26 Jan 2006 09:29:12 -0600 reply
Having Aldor being a vibrant language would be wonderful. Right now, I find myself in the position where I do my math hacking in Maple, but my formal mathematical programming in either MetaOCaml? or Haskell, because those languages are much more vibrant than Aldor (and they are typed!). If freeing Aldor would allow it to thrive, then by all means, free it!

Jacques Carette

Jose Alfredo Perez

Juan Gea Rosat

Igor Durdanovic

'Alvaro Tejero Cantero

It would be a great shame if Aldor were to fade into obscurity. It still has much to offer to the education and research communities, but the clock is ticking and unless it is adopted soon it will be superceded by something with similar functionality but quite possibly a weaker fundamental design.

Tom Ashby

source would help greatly, and especially under a non-restrictive licence.

Peter Broadbery


Aldor is a great language. Making the sources of the compiler available would greatly help in order to attract more developers and to make the compiler more robust.

Ralf Hemmecke

Nikolay Ivanov

Axiom basically stayed stagnant for many years and it took a tremendous effort (due to Tim Daly, Bill Page, Camm Maquire and others) to bring it back to life. If Aldor does not become free, it may suffer the same fate. Both Axiom and Aldor have their own strengths and weaknesses. Combined, they can become a most powerful system. There are so few experts in Aldor and Axiom. It is high time to involve a younger generation before it is too late.

William Sit

Please consider making aldor available under a more flexible license - for the good of the community.

Stephen Eglen

Free Aldor!

Henry Lenzi

I want to sign this petition to NAG. --unknown, Thu, 23 Mar 2006 07:20:59 -0600 reply
If NAG has released Axiom under free license, an plus enforce could be a great beneficious for the Open Source - Free Community (for all). Please, consider free Aldor under a more flexible license. Thanks.

Julián Calderón Almendros. jcalderon@uma.es

Free Aldor --Francois Maltey, Mon, 27 Mar 2006 11:12:27 -0600 reply
+1 from France

Please, make Aldor open-source and free! --Sergey Mechveliani, Tue, 04 Apr 2006 06:16:56 -0500 reply
Please, make Aldor open-source and free!

Generally, any non-open-source tool for scientific computation is a nonsense. One cannot build a reliable system basing on any non-open-source tool.

----------------------- Dr. Sergey Mechveliani, senior researcher, Pereslavl-Zalessky, Russia, http://www.botik.ru/~mechvel

Aldor is free (as in beer), but I would like to see Aldor free (as in freedom).

Christian Aistleitner

Aldor opensource --Niels Lubbes, Thu, 13 Apr 2006 10:47:59 -0500 reply
Count me in! If Aldor becomes opensource then Axiom/Aldor will definitely be of great interest to the scientific community.

Niels Lubbes

Yes! Open Up Aldor! --znmeb, Mon, 17 Apr 2006 01:46:23 -0500 reply
Another vote to free Aldor!

Gabriel Gellner

I think this is a very good idea. --unknown, Sat, 29 Apr 2006 00:01:02 -0500 reply
Good luck making it happen.

Bob Sutor

Aldor must be opensource --unknown, Tue, 02 May 2006 22:20:29 -0500 reply
Russian student :)

Open source Aldor allows porting to Windows --unknown, Tue, 09 May 2006 03:40:12 -0500 reply
Currently no Aldor compiler is available for Windows. Open sourcing Aldor would allow a decent port. The importance of a Windows port for widespread use of Axiom+Aldor hardly needs to be argumented.

Please... --Richard B. Kreckel, Wed, 10 May 2006 07:13:56 -0500 reply
...open sourcing Aldor would be a gain for CS education.


Hope you will allow Aldor to be used --unknown, Sun, 14 May 2006 18:25:57 -0500 reply
Ralph Gardner

Aldor compiler does not support amd64 architecture ATM. We are interested in porting it, but unfortunately the sources are not available. Wish Aldor were open source!

G. Hueber

Free Aldor!

Marie Kokotchikova.

People Friendship University of Russia.

Free software enriches the world --unknown, Tue, 06 Jun 2006 18:25:34 -0500 reply
Free software is a real contribution to humanity.

it is important to free Aldor --unknown, Wed, 07 Jun 2006 10:03:05 -0500 reply
Aldor is an important piece of software that will allow developers from around the world to work on an industrial-strength computer algebra system together. Since it is not distributed commercially any more, it makes sense to release it under a free software license. Please make Aldor free!

Sergei Winitzki, contributing developer of YACAS

Freeing Aldor --keady, Sun, 11 Jun 2006 23:42:37 -0500 reply
"Good luck making it happen."

free Aldor --melzgemz, Thu, 29 Jun 2006 04:47:47 -0500 reply
i guess i don't understand why anyone would knowingly allow restrictions in progress and development...? I hope this happens, if it hasn't already.

Aldor is much better to spent time on than SPAD --unknown, Wed, 05 Jul 2006 23:55:15 -0500 reply
Investing time on learning a computer language should be a well thought decision.;no one would like to learn a obscure language or a language that is under tight control of a single authority and would disappear someday. I have (and guess many) have deferred learning to use axiom until I have correct information on the status of aldor. Although there are many statements that aldor is to be freed we do not see it happenning.

Navendu Tripathi

aldor and axiom --unknown, Fri, 28 Jul 2006 19:17:45 -0500 reply
Aldor was intended early on as the extension language for axiom. It would be best if aldor and axiom had the same license, so axiom can complete its conversion to the aldor language without roadblocks.

Free Aldor. --unknown, Sat, 29 Jul 2006 09:16:21 -0500 reply
Aldor, as a commercial commercial business, is unlikely to became a success. On the contrary, if released as free SW, it will surely help developers, researchers and businessmen to improve scientific research and start many more succesful business. Dan

aldor and axiom --Martin Remisch, Mon, 28 Aug 2006 08:37:07 -0500 reply
Scientific research should not be hindered by commercial interests. So, free aldor!

Martin Remisch

free Aldor, please --wojtek, Sun, 10 Sep 2006 19:47:59 -0500 reply
Aldor is so cool, please don't let it linger on the harddrives of obscurity.

Free Aldor --andrnils, Sat, 07 Oct 2006 11:53:12 -0500 reply
On the alter of science commerical interest shall be offered

Free ALDOR for Axiom --nigelshea, Sat, 21 Oct 2006 00:59:38 -0500 reply

Free it and reap the rewards ... --gregory cj, Wed, 25 Oct 2006 13:13:58 -0500 reply
Wake up and do the right thing NAG - for yourself if not for us ... The clock is indeed ticking for Aldor and NAG's upside for owning a great but obscure language is 0. Why not free the source and reap the benefits in terms of image of being the instigator of a widely popular scientific computing language, the same way IBM's image was enhanced thanks to Eclipse?

Marrying Aldor & Axiom --dnordquest, Sun, 21 Jan 2007 10:42:48 -0600 reply
Without a common license, Aldor and Axiom may cohabit, but they can't be properly joined.

Revoking signature --tmgisi, Sat, 27 Jan 2007 14:34:38 -0600 reply
I hereby revoke my signature from this petition.

Christian Aistleitner

We need it. Please make it free! --Andrei, Thu, 01 Mar 2007 07:09:12 -0600 reply
There are many developers willing to work on Aldor. The only thing needed is making it free. Please do it and not let Aldor vanish in oblivion.

Get it free please, it would be a great support for the axiom project

Please let it be free --Cesar Rabak, Wed, 18 Jul 2007 17:05:31 -0500 reply
Let the community spring it. Don't let this piece be lost.

open source release planned for August 31 --Bill Page, Mon, 30 Jul 2007 23:43:17 -0500 reply
The following announcement was distributed at the registration for ISSAC 2007 conference on July 29, 2007. It is repeated here with the permission of the author: Stephen Watt.


Aldor is a programming language with an expressive type system well-suited for mathematical computing and which has been used to develop a number of computer algebra libraries. It was originally conceived as an extension language for the Axiom computer algebra system.

In Aldor, types and functions are first class values that can be constructed and manipulated within programs. Pervasive support for dependent types allows static checking of dynamic objects. What does this mean for a normal user? Aldor solves many difficulties encountered in widely-used object-oriented programming languages. It allows programs to use a natural style, combining the more attractive and powerful properties of functional, object-oriented and aspect-oriented styles.

Version 1.1 Source Release

Version 1.1 of Aldor is planned for public release in source and binary forms on Friday 31 August 2007. Distribution will be from Aldor.org under the Aldor Public License 2.0, which allows free non-commercial use, modification and re-distribution of Aldor software. Applications requiring other licensing terms should contact proposals@aldor.org.

Workshop 2007

The 2007 Aldor Workshop will be help 20-31 August in London Canada, hosted by the Ontario Research Centre for Computer Algebra at the University of Western Ontario This continues the tradition of earlier meetings help in the Orkney Islands (Scotland), London (Canada), Lille (France) and Santander (Spain).

The format of this workshop is as an extended meeting, with time for presentations, discussions, and on-site collaboration with colleagues. Participants will include users and developers of Aldor. Those interested in the workshop should send E-mail to workshop2007@aldor.org, indicating the desired dates to attend. There is no cost to register. Partial travel support may be available on a case-by-case basis,


Aldor still not open source --tajji, Tue, 17 Jun 2008 08:20:42 -0700 reply
Just mentioning here since the last message is a bit misleading: Aldor was not released as open source, even though the source code can be looked upon now. Aldor is currently classified as "semi-free" as defined by Free Software Foundation, and is also rejected by the Open Source Definition (opensource.org).

So this petition still applies: Free Aldor!

What if Leibnitz's differantial notation had been "semi-free"? We own to our predecessors to keep enlightment a common wealth. Please keep this petition alive.

Considering Aldor is no longer commercially distributed it is completely selfish to not release it as free software. Please, free Aldor and avoid being responsible for locking up
and probably ultimately the demise of -- this wonderful language.


Any update on this? --Leon, Sat, 03 Sep 2011 08:09:53 -0700 reply

Aldor compiler release --page, Wed, 10 Jul 2013 19:09:49 +0000 reply
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Stephen Watt 
Date: 10 July 2013 14:01
Subject: Re: [Aldor-l] Aldor compiler release
To: aldor-l 

I am happy to report that since early 2013 Aldor.org has permission to distribute Aldor under the Apache Software Foundation Apache License, Version 2.0. Thanks to Robert Sutor of IBM and Mike Dewar of NAG for helping this to happen.

We have been working on building a distribution that builds cleanly on current versions of the most popular platforms. There have been requests to obtain pre-release versions, even though the porting work is not complete. We therefore provide the development version on an as-is basis. This is now available for download from the aldor.org web site.

Stephen Watt

_______________________________________________ Aldor-l mailing list Aldor-l@aldor.org http://mail.aldor.org/mailman/listinfo/aldor-l_aldor.org

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