Aside-- Why I prefer Mathematica..
To be quite frank, I despise MapLev. (or is it MapleV?). It has inconsistent syntax, no proper naming conventions, inconsistent semantics, and in general is a poorly designed language. Mathematica, on the other hand is completely consistent. Every part of it uses the same naming conventions, the syntax is consistent across the whole language, and as a result, once you know a little Mathematica, you know the whole language . All you have to know is the names of the new functions, and since there are no abbreviations, it is trivial to guess.
OTOH, in Maple, once you have learned a part of the language, you know much less. Every new function that you learn has a different unguessable abbreviation.
Plus at conferences, the Maple people don't smile a lot. And Jerry Uhl has better parties. :-)
If you know of any real advantages to Maple, other than the fact that it is included in the student software package, please let me know EMAIL me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am serious about this, and am willing to listen.