Computer-Aided Teaching of All Mathematics (CATAM)

Introduction

The CATAM Computational Projects course provides an education in solving mathematical problems using a computing environment. The emphasis is on developing mathematical skills rather than programming abilities. The aim is for students to learn to use basic computational techniques and software packages to solve interesting problems, many of which are analytically intractable (or at least algebraically messy). CATAM has been part of the Mathematical Tripos since 1969.

News and Help

CATAM News
Read CATAM news for announcements of misprints and other important information about the projects. Urgent messages are also sent out by email.
Access to MATLAB and Questions about Software
For access to MATLAB, including obtaining your own copy, see the Recommended Software section below. Some questions and answers about software can be found on the MATLAB Q&A page.
Other Queries
If you have difficulties with the software, programming or understanding the manual (that are not answered in the above pages), please contact the CATAM helpline by sending an email message to: catam@maths.cam.ac.uk. Answers to some general questions which have arisen can be found here.

Lectures and MATLAB Sessions

Lectures
MATLAB Sessions
There are introductory MATLAB sessions for Part IA students prior to the start of the CATAM lectures. Students can sign up for a session either at the end of their Part IA Lent Term, or at the start of their Part IA Easter Term. Sign-up sheets are provided towards the end of the Lent Term.

Computational Projects Manuals

These manuals contain the project questions themselves.

Part IB
The manual for Part IB can be downloaded either as a complete manual, or in sections, from links on the Part IB Computational Projects Manual page.
Part II
The manual for Part II can be downloaded in sections, from links on the Part II Computational Projects Manual page.
If you are a Mathematical Tripos student and you have trouble accessing this information from locations outside Cambridge, then as an alternative to downloading the files you can collect a paper copy in person from the CMS reception. In the vacations you may ask for a copy to be posted to you (telephone 01223 765000, or email CMS reception); please specify whether you require a Part IB blue CATAM manual or a Part II red CATAM manual.
Data files
A few of the projects need data or other files; these can be downloaded from the Data Files page.

Recommended Software

MATLAB
We recommend that programs are written in MATLAB. All undergraduate students at the University are entitled to download and install MATLAB on their own computer, running Windows, Linux, or MacOS. for non-commercial University use only. The files for download are available here, with full installation instructions. MATLAB is also available on the CATAM Managed Cluster Services (MCS) in room GL.04 of CMS, and also on the Computing Service public MCS computers, and the MCS computers at a number of Colleges.
A booklet on learning to write MATLAB programs is available online.
Other Programming Languages
You may, if you prefer, use any other appropriate software on any computer system to which you have access (such as your own computer). If you do this, however, please remember that we cannot promise to help you with programming problems or to provide supporting software.
Word Processing
Word-processing packages, such as Microsoft Word, LibreOffice and LaTeX, are available on the MCS. You can install LibreOffice and LaTeX free of charge on your own computer (see also this Faculty LaTeX page, although that page may be a little out-of-date).
More on LaTeX Processing
A Brief LaTeX Guide for CATAM is available for download. The LaTeX source file, and supporting files, are also available for download as a zip file. Mac and Unix users should already have an unzip utility, while Windows users can download 7-Zip if they have not. The main Brief-Guide.tex file may be helpful as a template.

Computing Facilities

CATAM Managed Cluster Services
To access the CATAM MCS, which is located in room GL.04 in the basement of pavilion G, descend the stairs immediately in front of you after entering the main entrance to the CMS and turn right at the bottom, the basement entrance to pavilion G will be in front of you. Go through entrance, turn left (in front of the next set of doors) and the CATAM MCS will be in the room to your right, labelled ‘Computer Teaching Room’.
The CMS buildings are generally open from 8.30am-5.30pm, Monday-Friday; they are also open 8.30am-1pm on Saturdays during the Michaelmas and Lent Terms. They are closed on Sundays. The CATAM MCS is available most of the time that the CMS buildings are open, although it is sometimes booked for other purposes.
To see the availability of the CATAM Room please follow this CATAM Room Bookings link.