1st Edition

How Behavioral Scientists and Others Can Learn From Mistakes for Better, Happier Programming

ISBN 9781138480544
Published July 31, 2019 by Routledge
272 Pages

USD $55.95

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Book Description

MATLAB Blues is an accessible, comprehensive introduction to the MATLAB computer programming language—a powerful and increasingly popular tool for students and researchers. Rosenbaum identifies many of the common mistakes and pitfalls associated with using MATLAB, and shows users how they can learn from these mistakes to be better, happier programmers.

Each chapter systematically addresses one of the basic principles of the programming language, like matrices, calculations, contingencies, plotting, input-output, and graphics, and then identifies areas that are problematic, as well as potential errors that can occur. This not only provides the reader with the fundamental "scales and chords" that a MATLAB programmer needs to know, but also with a series of examples and explanations of how to avoid and remedy common mistakes.

Accompanied by an array of sample code that can be used and manipulated in conjunction with the textbook, this book is a practical, insightful introduction to MATLAB which provides motivation and encouragement to those with little or no background in programming as well as to those with more advanced concerns. It is an invaluable resource for researchers and students undertaking courses in research methods, statistics, and programming.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Introduction

Chapter 2. Matrices

Chapter 3. Calculations

Chapter 4. Contingencies

Chapter 5. Plotting

Chapter 6. Input-Output

Chapter 7. Data Types

Chapter 8. Functions

Chapter 9. Graphics


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David A. Rosenbaum is Distinguished Professor of Psychology at University of California, Riverside, USA.


"This book is an incredible resource for both novice and skilled programmers. Coding textbooks will usually describe a correct method for doing various tasks, but we often encounter obstacles or bugs that don’t have an obvious solution. MATLAB Blues is a treasure trove of practical examples of the kinds of problems that can mire even an expert coder. By working through such examples, either as a standalone or in concert with another instructional book, any programmer will accelerate their journey in the learning of coding skills." - Brad Wyble, Associate Professor of Psychology, Pennsylvania State University, USA

"Professor David Rosenbaum, internationally renowned for his psychological research in the area of Action and Movement Control, delivers another very useful MATLAB volume every psychology and motor control lab should have on its shelves. There are many MATLAB traps for the unwary and the purpose of this book is to help researchers anticipate and avoid many of them. The book is written at a level suited to graduate or postdoctoral psychologists and I fully concur with Prof. Rosenbaum's suggestion that it will be relevant to frequent MATLAB users and not just beginners. I will certainly recommend students in my lab to buy this book now and save hours trying to sort incomprehensible MATLAB errors in the future." - Alan Wing, Sensory Motor Neuroscience Lab, School of Psychology, University of Birmingham, UK

"The many short programming examples in this book are useful for all MATLAB users who want to make most of MATLAB. The programming problems and their elegant solutions are not only easy to comprehend but they are also helpful building blocks for developing one’s own MATLAB scripts. The book is useful for beginners and even advanced users of MATLAB who want to learn more about MATLAB by studying concrete and frequently encountered problems that are both interesting and challenging." - Rolf Ulrich, Department of Psychology, University of Tübingen, Germany

"Dr. Rosenbaum’s books are 'just right' for individuals who do not have prior experience in programming. Most students open the book with a doubtful mind about writing their own code. When finishing the book, they turn into confident individuals who can code and program for their own research. This new book, in particular, teaches students to learn from mistakes, which is the most common pathway of learning. Dr. Rosenbaum is the bravest scientist to share his own mistakes for the benefits of everyone who wants to learn MATLAB."- Zheng Wang, Assistant Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, University of Florida, USA

Support Material


Companion Website

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