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From the Preface of GAP 3.2

     . . .      [We omit a copy of the introductory part from the preface of GAP 3.1.]

Notable extensions from version 3.1 to version 3.2, which were announced as our plans in the preface of version 3.1 are the following:

  • the removal of the restriction of the degree of permutations,
  • extensions of the methods for for permutation groups, e.g., for finding the composition factors,
  • extension of the methods for finite presentations, e.g., by reduced Reidemeister-Schreier, Modified Todd-Coxeter, and Tietze methods,
  • further tools for getting character tables, e.g., by the Dixon-Schneider method working from class multiplication coefficients, and for working with character tables, e.g, for finding permutation characters. Other extensions include a package for univariate polynomials over a coefficient ring.

Version 3.2 is the first to provide separate packages in the form of a GAP share library (see chapter 47 for details). At present there are three such packages, the ANU p-quotient and p-group generation package by Eamonn O'Brien and Mike Newman, the (nonperiodic) Nilpotent Quotient program of Werner Nickel, and a package for Weyl groups by Meinolf Geck.

Of course the development of GAP will go on. Of our own plans for this that were already mentioned in the introduction to version 3.1 there remain the removal of the present restriction of the size of finite fields and better means of working with the output of the subgroup lattice program. Further plans for the near future include still further additions to the methods for permutation groups, the start of a package of tools for matrix groups, the provision of graphical output through an X-window interface and a debugger. Again some of these plans are already in some state of implementation, but just did not make it for the deadline that we had set for this release.

     . . .      [We omit a copy of remarks on further policy from the preface of GAP 3.1.]

The reliability of large systems of computer programs is a well known general problem and, although over the past year the record of GAP in this respect has not been too bad, of course GAP is not exempt from this problem. We therefore feel that it is mandatory that we, but also other users, are warned of bugs that have been encountered in GAP or when doubts have arisen. We ask all users of GAP to use the GAP forum for issuing such warnings.

     . . .      [We omit a copy of the acknowledgements from the preface of GAP 3.1.]

Aachen, January 30, 1993, Joachim Neubüser.