Lesson 01: Introduction to MATLAB


What is MATLAB?

The name MATLAB stands for "MATrix LABoratory" and was originally designed as a tool for doing numerical computations with matrices and vectors. It has since grown into a high-performance language for technical computing. MATLAB, integrating computation, visualization, and programming in an easy-to-use environment, allows easy matrix manipulation, plotting of functions and data, implementation of algorithms, creation of user interfaces, and interfacing with programs in other languages. Typical uses include:

  • Math and Computation
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Data Analysis and Visualization
  • Application Development
  • Graphical User Interface development


Getting Started

Window Layout

MATLAB development IDE can be launched from the icon created on the desktop. The main working window in MATLAB is called the desktop. When MATLAB is started, the desktop appears in its default layout:

MatLab MainScreen

The following tools are managed by MATLAB desktop, although not all of them appear by default when you first start

  • Current Folder - This panel allows you to access the project folders and files.
  • Command Window - This is the main area where commands can be entered at the command line.It is indicated by the command prompt (>>).
  • Workspace - The workspace shows all the variables created and/or imported from files.
  • Command History - This panel shows or rerun commands that are entered at the command line.

By default, the Command History window closes after a statement is selected or the Esc key is pressed. To keep the Command History window open, in the Command History window, click and then select either Detach or Dock. If the Command History window is closed while detached or docked, go to the Home tab, and in the Environment section, click Layout. Then, under Show, click Command History and select either Docked or Popup.


Practice Exercises



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