The student lounge blog focuses on student success stories. Winning student teams share their knowledge and the MathWorks student programs team shares best practices and workflows using MATLAB and Simulink.
In today’s post, Owen Paul joins us to share some of the most popular YouTube videos on MATLAB’s “How-To” Playlist for beginners to help you get started on your MATLAB journey. Over to you, Owen..
You are sitting in front of a computer with a blank MATLAB screen in front of you. You have an assignment you need to finish but no clue where to start. Everything made sense when the professor was explaining the functions in class but now that you’re on your own, MATLAB looks like another language. We’ve all been there. Because learning any coding language or program is the same as learning a new language.
As a visual learner, I always click on shorter videos when searching for MATLAB help. That’s why I wanted to share 6 short videos that you can use to help you learn the basics needed for working in MATLAB. Whether you’re new to MATLAB or want to learn new features to make coding faster, these videos are for you. All the videos come from the How-to Playlist on the MATLAB YouTube Channel. For more short instructional videos on MATLAB and Simulink, be sure to check it out.
The first step to coding, is creating a new script to save all your code. Generally, people work with a regular MATLAB script (.m), which allows for code and comments. But MATLAB scripts are so last century. MATLAB Live Scripts (.mlx) enable you to have code, comments, text, and pictures all in one file. This makes it easy to create and document reports and assignments. Learn how to use live scripts in this first video.
Scalar vs. Vector operations
To use the dot operator or not to use the dot operator. This is a question that engineering students worldwide have been pondering since the beginning of time. This next video intends to break this cycle of confusion. This video demonstrates the difference between scalar, vector, and matrix variables and the operators necessary when working with each data type.
Indexing Data Sets
You now know how to divide matrices, but now you need the last 3 columns from the resulting matrix. Indexing data can take anywhere from a couple lines of code toover30. If it’s the latter, sorry to burst your bubble but you are probably doing too much work. There’s plenty of functions and features that MATLAB offers that allow you to quickly search and index large data sets. Learn how, in this next video.
Importing Excel Data
These past couple videos have demonstrated how to work with data, but what do you do if that data is in excel? Import it! Excel is a great tool, but MATLAB offers a lot more features for data analysis and visualization. To leverage these features, you must import the data into MATLAB. You can do this without writing any code, and this next video will show you how.
Debugging MATLAB Code
If you’ve written any code by this point you have probably run into a few errors in your code. Finding and fixing these errors, also called debugging, can sometimes be a painful process. Even if you know where the error is occurring, sometimes it can be hard to determine what’s causing the error. MATLAB has some neat features that streamline the debugging process. Learn about these features and the debugging process in this next video.
Speed up MATLAB Code
Now that you have your code working, it’s time to speed it up. There is no one way to make MATLAB faster but you can certainly implement several techniques that increase the performance and speed of your code. Check out these techniques in this last video.
I hope you learned something new from watching these videos. If you want to see more of these style of MATLAB and Simulink videos be sure to check out the “How-To” Playlist on the MATLAB YouTube Channel. If you’re searching for a more in depth course for MATLAB basics, MathWorks offers a free 2 hour self-paced course named MATLAB Onramp. It’s a great resource for learning a lot of the concepts in the videos above but in a hands-on way.