Matlab Tutorial 1: Hello world, plotting, mathematical functions and file types

In this first Matlab tutorial, I will try to show you the basics of Matlab user interface, data types, simple functions and mathematical operations. All with basic examples so that anyone with any level of programming knowledge can start using Matlab as a mathematical laboratory.

Matlab User Interface

Start Matlab by a double click on the Matlab icon or else by searching for it under program. Now, there should be a large window containing several smaller. These could for instance be:

  • Command Window
  • Command History
  • and Workspace.

This will of course depend on what version you are currently working in. This is the desktop of Matlab.

Command Window: Here you can write your own command lines and access your own files (m-files), but normally you can also see the output from the calculations in this window.
Command History: All command lines are saved here and can be seen in the window, but the same can be achieved by using the arrow button (up). The past command lines can the be seen in the command window.
Workspace: The variables that have been used or created during the execution will be shown in this window. Here you can see value, bytes and class. When you double click on the variables, the elements of the variables become visible.

These three windows should be the default when you start Matlab. Read more »