High Performance Computing
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This is a crosspost from   Cleve’s Corner: Cleve Moler on Mathematics and Computing Cleve Moler is the author of the first MATLAB, one of the founders of MathWorks, and is currently Chief Mathematician at the company. He writes here about MATLAB, scientific computing and interesting mathematics.. See the original post here.

Nick Higham (1961-2024)

Nick Higham passed away last Saturday. Nick was a close friend of mine and a great friend of MATLAB. I will leave it to others to describe his research and teaching, his many honors, and his service to our community, especially SIAM. I have just a few, more personal, comments.


NA Digest

Monday's NA Digest led off with this from Nick's wife Francoise and his brother Des.

Subject: Nick Higham (1961--2024)
With great sadness we report that Nick Higham, Royal Society Research
Professor and Richardson Professor of Applied Mathematics at the
University of Manchester, passed away on January 20, 2024, at the age
of 62 after an 18 month struggle with a form of blood cancer. An
obituary describing Nick's research and leadership contributions will
appear in SIAM News in due course.
Francoise Tisseur and Des Higham


Nick was an excellent writer, and an excellent writer about writing.

Here are the covers of his six books.

SIAM published five of these. Two are surveys of Nick's research on the accuracy of numeric algorithms and the computation of matrix functions. Two more, one of them coauthored with Dennis Sherwood, are guides to mathematical exposition.

MATLAB Guide, by Des and Nick Higham, is one of my favorite books about MATLAB. It is a succinct introduction for newcomers and a valuable refresher for old-timers. The third edition, published in 2017, includes chapters on object-oriented computing, parallel computing, the Symbolic Math Toolbox and other recent additions. Be sure to check out the MATLAB Guide web site.

The only non-SIAM book pictured above is The Princeton Companion to Applied Mathematics. It is over 1,000 pages long and features nearly 200 sections written by an international team of experts. Nick is the editor-in-chief and wrote many of the sections himself.


Here is a Word Cloud from Nick's home page. It shows the frequency of the tags for his blog and confirms his interest in MATLAB.


Anyone interested in numerical linear algebra should also be interested in the gallery function, which is based on Nick's work. Enter

>> doc gallery

Scroll down to matrixname and investigate over 70 different test matrices.

If you find gallery irresistible, take a look at anymatrix, an extensible matrix collection, by Nick and Mantas Mikaitis.


This is very personal for me. Thirty or forty years ago, Charlie Van Loan and I were regarded as authorities on computing the matrix exponential, $e^{A}$. The function expm has been in MATLAB since its very beginning. Around twenty years ago, we ceded the authority title to Nick and Awad Al-Mohy. Their code for matrix exponential is now the basis for expm.


Our business has lost one of its superstars. I have lost a good friend, way too soon. Goodbye Nick.

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Published with MATLAB® R2023a