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Ask Slashdot: Replacing a TI-84 With Software On a Linux Box?

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the can-we-get-a-modern-display-on-these-things dept.

Math 254

yanom writes "I'm currently a high school student using my TI-84 for mathematics courses. It has all the functionality I need (except CAS), but saying that the hardware is dated is putting it nicely. Waiting 4-5 seconds for a simple function to be graphed on its 96x64 screen just makes me want to hurl it at the wall. Recently, I've begun to notice the absurdity of doing my math homework on a 70's era microchip when I have an i7 machine with Linux within arm's reach. I've begun looking for software packages that could potentially replace the graphing calculator's functionality, including Xcas and Maxima, but both lack what I consider basic calculator functionality — xcas can't create a table of values for a function, and maxima can't use degrees, only radians. So, does anyone know of a good software package to replace my graphing calculator (and maybe provide CAS to boot)?"

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R; apt-get install r-base (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 2 years ago | (#42293281)

If you're not afraid of programming (and it sounds like you're not): R. Gimme more details if you want to know what packages to use for graphing and stuff but installing R is incredibly easy [r-project.org] . At the risk of tooting my own horn, you can read through this post [slashdot.org] , the corresponding story and the replies to it. There are a ton of packages for producing graphs. Are you going for accuracy? Beauty? Speed? What?

Lastly, please don't hate on the TI-84. I still have mine as well as a TI-89 and while they were both expensive, they are beautiful and trustworthy devices. Both have outlasted countless other computing machines that have passed through my usage.

Re:R; apt-get install r-base (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293625)

404 File Not Found

The requested URL (ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2529390&cid=38076772) was not found.

Sorry About That (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 2 years ago | (#42294021)

The requested URL (ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2529390&cid=38076772) was not found.

This is the correct link [slashdot.org] . Man, first a major typo from a Wikipedia article and now this, I think I'm done with Slashdot for today. Not even sure how that happened ...

Re:Sorry About That (3, Interesting)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | about 2 years ago | (#42294277)

When they added the protocol://-hiding code to Firefox, they screwed up slightly; before the protocol handler is determined when visiting a URL, copying the URL out of the field will not include the protocol handler under certain conditions. I'm having trouble reproducing it at the moment, but it's stung me exactly like that before.

Re:Sorry About That (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294983)

This annoyed me so much I dug through Firefox's about:config until I found browser.urlbar.trimURLs. Set it to false and gain functionality.

Re:R; apt-get install r-base (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293681)

Lastly, please don't hate on the TI-84. I still have mine as well as a TI-89 and while they were both expensive, they are beautiful and trustworthy devices. Both have outlasted countless other computing machines that have passed through my usage.

Same here. Both devices are wonderful.

Re:R; apt-get install r-base (2)

sinij (911942) | about 2 years ago | (#42293949)

While I worked in academia I dealt with both R and matlab. Matlab is more mature, but it isn't free. Most of the code that get passed to you by others is an unreadable amateur code written in matlab. Most other academics wouldn't know how to run anything but matlab. Some advanced stats cannot be easily done in R, unless you want to write it from scratch (good luck with that).

Overall - if you write your own code and don't expect to do anything else with it, R is fine. If you want to work with others, especially crusty non-CS PhDs - matlab is the only way to go.

R is easier (2)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | about 2 years ago | (#42294625)

"Matlab is more mature"

That is not even close to being true. R surpasses but not outclasses Matlab in many instances and vice versa. It all depends on what you're doing.

R has an unknown userbase (http://bigcomputing.blogspot.se/2011/07/figuring-out-number-of-r-users-in.html) but an impressive, free codebase (www.r-project.org)

whereas Matlab has some 300,000 users (http://www.cs.cornell.edu/info/people/lnt/multimatlab.html) and an equally impressive codebase ( http://www.google.com/search?q=matlab+code [google.com] ).

R is an excellent piece of software, but so is Matlab.

As for simplicity, I find them equally easy to learn.

That said I dumped Matlab years ago for R.

Mathcad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294897)

Is Mathcad still around?

Re:Mathcad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294929)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathcad

Stable release 15.0; Prime 2.0 / February 29, 2012; 8 months ago

Re:R; apt-get install r-base (1)

Colourspace (563895) | about 2 years ago | (#42295003)

MATLAB had a free student edition back when I was studying EE (~20 years back), I don't know if this is still the case. Slightly crippled W.R.T. the paid version, but not anything you would miss as an undergrad. Octave is a free version which is *roughly* equivalent to MATLAB, I used this just a couple of years back (when all the MATLAB licenses were being used up by co-workers).

Re:R; apt-get install r-base (3, Informative)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 2 years ago | (#42294215)

I also give my backing to R. There are other packages which look more like integrated though like Octave [gnu.org] or Euler [sourceforge.net] . You can even get Mathematica [wolfram.com] for Linux but it is somewhat expensive.

try these (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293335)

gnuplot
and bc

Sage or Python + IPython + SciPy + NumPy (2)

rbprbp (2731083) | about 2 years ago | (#42293337)

If you don't mind doing coding, try Sage [sagemath.org] or Python + IPython + NumPy + SciPy. For a quick calculator I like to just use bc in a terminal.

Re:Sage or Python + IPython + SciPy + NumPy (3, Interesting)

Vireo (190514) | about 2 years ago | (#42293557)

I concur: the Python shell is a very very powerful calculator given that you can define functions in the interpreter. There are many graphics packages for Python; Matplotlib is perhaps the most complete albeit not the symplest. As suggested above, installing Python with the IPython shell, NumPy and SciPy, enables the "PyLab" IPython mode, which is similar to what Matlab would offer in terms of graphics and computation integration.

Simpler to install and learn is perhaps Octave (with plots using GnuPlot), which would behave similarly. Although for the long term, I'd say learning the Python shell is more useful than learning Octave.

Re:Sage or Python + IPython + SciPy + NumPy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293989)

Sage is simple

plot(x**2+3*cos(x*pi/2),(x,-5,5))

and it scales nice:

x,y = var('x y')
implicit_plot(x**2-y**2==3,(x,-10,10),(y,-10,10))

Give it a try!

How about... (4, Funny)

TWX (665546) | about 2 years ago | (#42293343)

...a TI-84 emulator? So long as they didn't add wait-states to simulate the processing speed of the TI...

Re:How about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293429)

On Android, there is an emulator called Graph89 - needs a Ti89 rom, no special built-in delays.

Re:How about... (2)

na1led (1030470) | about 2 years ago | (#42293913)

Someone should mod a ti89 with newer chipset and android OS. That way teachers will still think your using a standard graphing calculator. My TI89 helped me so much in college, it helped me pass my physics class.

Re:How about... (3, Informative)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#42294111)

Someone should mod a ti89 with newer chipset and android OS.

Would this [google.com] be equivalent?

Caveat: I am not a "math person."

Re:How about... (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 years ago | (#42294199)

Someone should mod a ti89 with newer chipset and android OS.

Would this [google.com] be equivalent?

Caveat: I am not a "math person."

in functionality, sure.

except for the one functionality of being able to use it in class, of course.

Re:How about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294271)

I don't think so. The parent seems to be asking for something that will actually look, *physically*, like a TI-89, and Droid48 is just an app for android devices. There are pretty strict restrictions on what one can bring into math tests, and a Ti-89 is about as far as one can go. Smartphones and tablets are right out.

Re:How about... (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#42294605)

Someone should mod a ti89 with newer chipset and android OS. That way teachers will still think your using a standard graphing calculator. My TI89 helped me so much in college, it helped me pass my physics class.

There is this thing called HP-50g, it has an ARM inside, and, what I found surprising, tends to be actually cheaper than TI's while being more powerful still. It doesn't run Android, but hey, that would eat your batteries like there's no tomorrow.

Re:How about... (2)

WilliamGeorge (816305) | about 2 years ago | (#42293527)

I'm not sure about Linux, but years ago when I was in school there was a Windows emulator for a lot of different TI calcs. You had to upload your ROM from your own calc, though, so that it wasn't stealing IP: you were basically cloning your TI calc onto your computer. It worked really nicely, and was great for programming in TI Basic and testing stuff out.

Re:How about... (1)

X0563511 (793323) | about 2 years ago | (#42293747)

Yes, they are available. [ticalc.org] Since you already have the calculator, you can dump your ROM.

Octave (5, Informative)

mjvvjm (1003135) | about 2 years ago | (#42293381)

Octave - a matlab work-alike
easy plotting, extensive libraries for linear algebra, stats, etc.

Re:Octave (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293473)

Mod Parent Up
Octave + gnuplot = win

Re:Octave (1)

WombleGoneBad (2591287) | about 2 years ago | (#42293607)

+1 It does graphs, and a *lot* more. Invaluable for math work.

Another vote for Octave (2)

Fallen Kell (165468) | about 2 years ago | (#42293631)

This was the first thing I thought of when I saw the post. You need to learn a little of how to use it, but learning Octave is going to be a skill useful for probably at least the next 10-20 years, and something that will give you a good advantage in college as well as the real world jobs market. It uses a very similar language structure as Matlab, which is pretty much the "standard" mathematics program for companies/corporations for precision mathematics.

Re:Octave (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293761)

Strongly agree, and this fits into the "gnuplot" votes too. Gnuplot alone has a pretty nasty interface, so it's better to use Octave-Gnuplot integration.

I love Octave! It's totally my first-choice calculator when all I've got is a Linux console.

Re:Octave (1)

tonyt3 (1014391) | about 2 years ago | (#42293923)

You can Google "alternatives to Matlab" and find a nice write-up about several open source alternatives ...Octave gets very good reports. Or you can get the Student version of Matlab for a hundred bucks if you want the whole thing. Amazingly good. http://amca01.wordpress.com/2011/08/31/the-best-matlab-alternative/ [wordpress.com]

Re:Octave (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294679)

Used Octave extensively, working with radar applications. Relatively easy to port Matlab files to run in Octave. Octave is easier to script, and extensible.

Re:Octave (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294879)

Actually you can just type 'calculator' into the Google search bar hit enter and there you have it. Here's just one example: http://insidesearch.blogspot.com/2011/12/showing-some-love-to-math-lovers.html

And: http://insidesearch.blogspot.com/2012/03/graphing-on-googlecom-now-in-3d.html

You can also just enter any equation in the google search bar and Google will not only give you an answer, but will present you with a full scientific calculator.

Re:Octave (1)

Matt_Bennett (79107) | about 2 years ago | (#42294549)

And there is a version that works on Android tablets. In terms of scientific computing, Matlab is the standard, and Octave is a very good work-alike.

online dude.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293419)

http://www.meta-calculator.com/online/

WxMaxima (1)

shellster_dude (1261444) | about 2 years ago | (#42293445)

WxMaxima is may go to choice for intense mathematical stuff.

Octave (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293447)

Octave is another option you should look in to. Uses gnuplot for graphics (though this is transparent when you're using it)
http://www.gnu.org/software/octave/

Scilab (1)

bradgoodman (964302) | about 2 years ago | (#42293461)

Have you taken a look at the (free) program scilab?

http://www.scilab.org/ [scilab.org]

I use it a lot. It may be a little more than you need - almost more like an open-source "Matlab" but it is very good, and free.

Mathematica (3, Informative)

michael_cain (66650) | about 2 years ago | (#42293485)

It's not free, but a student license isn't much more than the high-end calculators (at least at local bookstore prices) and it will do just about anything you can imagine needing up through at least calculus. Even the mobile or browser front ends that use a Wolfram server are damned good, so long as you have network connectivity.

gnuplot, WolframAlpha, Maple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293505)

gnuplot was what I used as a free solution.

You might also want to checkout WolframAlpha.

Since I am in Canada, Maple is my favorite paid solution. But I guess Mathematica also works fine.

Re:gnuplot, WolframAlpha, Maple (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293555)

Oh, and Octave.

maxima can't do degrees? Ha. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293521)

Why do you want a CAS if you're not prepared to use it. For each trig function, define another which takes an argument in degrees and calls the built-in one with the argument converted to radians.

Re:maxima can't do degrees? Ha. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294093)

The real problem is that he/she is spelling the word "degrees" incorrectly. The correct spelling is "* pi / 180" That is, when you want to type sin(30 degrees), you should instead type sin(30 * pi / 180).

Re:maxima can't do degrees? Ha. (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#42294479)

The real problem is that he/she is spelling the word "degrees" incorrectly. The correct spelling is "* pi / 180" That is, when you want to type sin(30 degrees), you should instead type sin(30 * pi / 180).

In Forth, that's exactly what you'd do: : DEGREES PI * 180 / ; (or the FP equivalent, of course. Then you just type 15 DEGREES and it does what you think it does.

MATLAB (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293523)

subject says it all

Believe it or not (1)

alexbgreat (1422591) | about 2 years ago | (#42293543)

Believe it or not, The 84 is still fairly good all around. Nothing beats a dedicated hardware keypad (read: not a keyboard) for mathematics entry. I too delve into using the computer for mathematics. The calculator was way faster, entrywise. As for the 4-5 second delay in graphing, adjust xres, or get a faster calculator, or look into overclocking (not kidding). I also used an 89 for years, and 8 years later the 89 is still my go-to calculator.

To summarize : Computer for general homework == pain in the ass. Dedicated hardware is still the way to go.

So let me sum this up (2, Insightful)

jeffmeden (135043) | about 2 years ago | (#42293565)

"instead of waiting 4-5 seconds to do something, i am interested in spending hours of effort to recreate/relearn it on a different platform"

Why not use the "agonizing eternity" of 4-5 seconds to reflect on life, maybe hum a song, or do anything that helps your mind relax before you develop ADD and can ONLY do math?

what karma? it's friday.

Re:So let me sum this up (3, Insightful)

Scutter (18425) | about 2 years ago | (#42293769)

I agree! Why try to find a better way to do something when there's an out-of-date, inefficient way already invented? I mean, think of all of those useless hours you'll spend learning something new when you could be spending that time reflecting on life, or maybe humming a song!

Re:So let me sum this up (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | about 2 years ago | (#42294025)

Yes, for an even better solution why not just point out that you can find the answers on the internet. The point of homework is *not* to find a way out of doing it, and the point of waiting on your TI-84 is *not* so that you will waste your precious time. That title goes to slashdot.

Re:So let me sum this up (1)

kwerle (39371) | about 2 years ago | (#42293797)

Or maybe: I wonder if someone has already solve this problem?
Or maybe: If I solve this problem, I wonder if anyone else might also benefit?

The tao of the engineer (4, Funny)

overshoot (39700) | about 2 years ago | (#42293841)

"instead of waiting 4-5 seconds to do something, i am interested in spending hours of effort to recreate/relearn it on a different platform"

An engineer is someone who will spend three hours figuring out how to do a two-hour job in one hour.

Re:So let me sum this up (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 2 years ago | (#42294197)

Because that's how smart people make the world a better place.

Re:So let me sum this up (1)

egranlund (1827406) | about 2 years ago | (#42294915)

"instead of waiting 4-5 seconds to do something, i am interested in spending hours of effort to recreate/relearn it on a different platform"

Why not use the "agonizing eternity" of 4-5 seconds to reflect on life, maybe hum a song, or do anything that helps your mind relax before you develop ADD and can ONLY do math?

what karma? it's friday.

I suggest just getting a better calculator.

You tend to get used to something like a calculator with muscle memory and all of that. If you were out of school I would say go for the computer, but while you're in school, and subject to the restrictions of exams, it makes a lot more sense to just stick with using what you're always going to be using.

Ask Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293581)

...Now the place where people go too lazy to read a few articles on Google.

emulators on Android (2)

stenvar (2789879) | about 2 years ago | (#42293603)

If you want something portable and compact, there are tons of emulators of programmable calculators (many of them free) for Android phones.

If you want something more heavy-duty running on Linux, you have a choice between Octave, Python, and R.

Matlab (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293615)

Matlab

do it without a calculator like I was made to (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293655)

Kids these days

Re:do it without a calculator like I was made to (1)

mykepredko (40154) | about 2 years ago | (#42294181)

I know. Next thing you know, they will expect a ride to and from school, even though we had to walk through three miles of snow pulling a sledge with our younger siblings on it and, to make it even harder, it was uphill both ways!

And then when we got to school, we had to warm up our quills over a whale oil stove that smoked so badly that half the class succumbed to carbon monoxide poisening and those that didn't, coughed small pox, diptheria and polio all over the other kids.

They got it easy these days - and you know what makes it worse? They don't believe a word you say what it was like when you were their age.

myke

(apologies to Monty Python)

Matlab (2)

sinij (911942) | about 2 years ago | (#42293667)

Matlab. If you planning to go into science (not CS, actual science) ability to code in Matlab will put you head above any of your peers.

You want SAGE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293669)

SAGE [sagemath.org] , hands down. Granted, it isn't really a calculator, more a Mathematica/Matlab replacement, but it will let you learn and do more math than anything else available.

The best part? Completely open source (so you *know* how the result is being calculated, no Mathematica/Matlab-like black magic) and free - both as in beer and freedom (Mathematica/Matlab cost ~5k USD normal, per-seat license ...).

Re:You want SAGE (1)

X0563511 (793323) | about 2 years ago | (#42293759)

Hell, they offer a VM with sage already installed and ready to go. Just run it in vmware player or virtualbox or whatever.

There is an App for this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293731)

Have a look at:
http://lpg.ticalc.org/prj_tilem/

I wouldn't be suprised if the emulation would be much faster than the original hardware.

First question ... (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#42293737)

So, does anyone know of a good software package to replace my graphing calculator

Presumably, you are allowed to take your calculator to exams, but not your Linux box.

So, if you're going to end up needing the calculator for your exams, you might want to live with the suck to be sure you don't find yourself fumbling with a device you've not used in a while.

And, to complete the old man aspect of this comment ... luxury, why in my day we used to dream of having a 4-5 second delay in drawing our graphs, we used to have to walk in chest deep snow, up-hill (both ways) to school and back, and do our graphing with rocks and twigs, and send them to the teacher with smoke signals. Of course, I had an onion on my belt, because that was the style in those days ...

Anyway, good luck finding an alternative. :-P

Re:First question ... (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | about 2 years ago | (#42294799)

"Presumably, you are allowed to take your calculator to exams, but not your Linux box."

Nokia N900...

That http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Elop [wikipedia.org] should get another job.

Mathics, Sage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293741)

Mathics [mathics.org] is a great CAS system with Mathematica-compatible syntax and great 2D plotting.
Sage [sagemath.org] is another great CAS system but it's plotting facilities seem less flexible.

If you have a smartphone . . . (5, Insightful)

dogsbreath (730413) | about 2 years ago | (#42293817)

. . . there are some excellent graphing calculator apps for iOS and I am sure Android has a fair selection as well. They do 2D, 3D and solve algebra.

Also there exist a number of HP emulations but I don't know if there are any for TI.

All of them execute at some Warp factor faster than discrete calculators but there are some issues with using a device different from what the school recommends. My experience with guiding my own spawn around the perils of high school math leads me to believe that HSs (in Canada at least) are more interested in teaching button pushing than math. Many teachers have no interest in math and are perplexed when someone has an issue with something such as a different calculator solution.

Besides that, when using alternatives you may get differing results or even some fantastic errors depending on how well written the code is.

[RANT ON]
Sorry, but I gotta say this: CALCULATORS OBSTRUCT THE LEARNING OF MATH

phew, had to get that out

My apologies for the caps but it is a rant after all . . .

There is a place for calculators in engineering courses and in some aspects of learning math but you can get a PhD in Math Science without ever getting near a calculator. I saw my kids get all caught up in the numbers to the detriment of understanding the process and theory. When they started doing courses later on (such as physics, biology, chemistry and sociology-er 'stats'), they had to go back and learn some of the fundamentals that had never been emphasized because of the calculator fixation.

Bottom line: use the TI and don't waste time on alternatives. Use that time to learn the theory.

[RANT OFF]

Well, unless of course you are a real nerd (like the rest of us) and do both: learn the math and are obsessive about calculation tools

Cheers

Re:If you have a smartphone . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294399)

The best thing I ever did for my math ability was when I switched from Scientific Calculator to Slide Rule+Abacus in college. I only had one test problem in the last 2 years of my chemistry degree that "required" anything not available on these devices, and they helped immensely.

Relating to the original question, though, gnuplot should be able to do most of the graphing, and anything else can be done in LibreOffice Calc, Perl (or any other programming language), or Google.

Slide rules (1)

dogsbreath (730413) | about 2 years ago | (#42294647)

Slide rules are interesting because they give visual and tactile feedback about the numbers being manipulated. They also prevent the presentation of ridiculous precision when no level of accuracy is available. Plus the added benefit of forcing the user to keep track of magnitude.

[salivating noisily] slide roools! mmmmm...........

Re:If you have a smartphone . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294519)

The "J" language (an ASCII decendant of APL) can be installed on an iPhone or android device.
It's a full programming language with plotting features built in. Steep learning curve, but very cool.
(http://www.jsoftware.com/)

Re:If you have a smartphone . . . (1)

dogsbreath (730413) | about 2 years ago | (#42294985)

Thanks! Been a long time but APL was neat! Now if I could only find a FOCAL interpreter to run my old DEC games.

Derive 6 (1)

Papabravo (1278230) | about 2 years ago | (#42293855)

Derive 6 is the software package that emulates the TI-84/89/92 series of machines.

Mathics and Sage (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293863)

Mathics [mathics.org] for a great free Mathematica-compatible CAS system with decent 2D plotting.
Sage [sagemath.org] is another great CAS system but the plotting is less flexible.

Maple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293903)

Look up Maple...

look at TilEm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293961)

TilEm should do it. Finger's crossed

http://lpg.ticalc.org/prj_tilem/

open source sugestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42293993)

Sage is a good alternative to mathematica.

Sage Math (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294023)

Try Sage: http://www.sagemath.org/

Anger management (2, Insightful)

six025 (714064) | about 2 years ago | (#42294071)

This is not likely to be a popular comment around here, but seriously ...

Waiting 4-5 seconds for a simple function to be graphed on its 96x64 screen just makes me want to hurl it at the wall.

If this is a literal problem rather than a joke you may want to look at the reasons why you're so angry about waiting a few seconds. If you can't control this now you will very likely find life becomes quite challenging for you in the long run.

Peace,
Andy.

Re:Anger management (1)

bluephone (200451) | about 2 years ago | (#42294459)

I think it's not literal, his point is it's 2012, there's no legit reason this shouldn't take a fraction of a second, and the understanding of this is frustrating.

Re:Anger management (1)

dogsbreath (730413) | about 2 years ago | (#42294809)

You insensitive clod: some of us have difficulty controlling our anger and turn green easily. Nuclear accidents happen and this is the result.

I have difficulty waiting while a graphing calculator crunches numbers . . . crunch plot, crunch plot, crunch plot ad nauseum. I wouldn't hurl it at the wall because I think they are cute and it isn't their fault they are slow. . .

  but puny calculators do make me angry! You won't like my math when I'm angry.

Stacked Against You (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294073)

If you're planning on taking any math at a university in the future, it is unlikely that they'll allow your linux computer into a testing center for any proctored exams. The more amazing the solution you build, the more helpless you will be when your only tool is a calculator that a testing center will allow when you are totally unfamiliar with how to quickly manipulate equations in it.

How do you bring a Linux system to a test? (2)

mykepredko (40154) | about 2 years ago | (#42294099)

My daughter is 17 and in the same boat you are and would have liked to use a PC for her Calculus/Functions but I pushed her back to the calculator (with the help of her teacher).

This isn't a new question; I was in the last year of high school where slide rules were taught - everything you are asking about using a PC program instead of a calculator was given by us for using a calculator instead of a slide rule. I suspect that centuries ago, students complained about having to use an abacus and wanted to use a slide rule instead.

I don't like the TI-8x (here in Ontario, they use the 83+) for a number of reasons, but:
1. The Textbooks reference the TI gonkulator and show examples for the calculator.
2. Teachers are familiar with it. Don't expect your teacher to be very helpful if you come back and ask something like, "I'm graphing 2sin(x + 45) on xxx under Ubuntu but the zeros don't show up where I think they should - can you help me?" Chances are the teacher will either be unwilling or unable to help you.
3. You could bring in a Linux pad or netbook, but I doubt you'll be allowed to bring it into tests for reasons discussed in point 2. Teachers are suspicious of things that can possibly do more than the tools they expect.
4. Calculators are incredibly useful tools. It's often easier to pull one out on your desk to test values than bring up a calc program on the PC (especially if you only have one display AND it can be a problem finding real estate on two screens sometimes). They're good things to be familiar with.

Good luck, it's an interesting question and I'm looking forward to how other people answer,

myke

Re:How do you bring a Linux system to a test? (1)

tibit (1762298) | about 2 years ago | (#42294881)

EasyCalc [sourceforge.net] for Palm is quite nice. The most recent version runs on PocketPC, too, but I didn't use that one. Doesn't do CAS, but it is opensource, and you can compile it on your own and tweak it to your heart's content. It also runs on a reasonably modern platform, so you don't have to worry about the CPU being a dinosaur. I think it'll work on pretty much any Palm II and newer device IIRC. I've used it on a monochrome Handspring Visor. Came very handy for advanced strength of materials. I think at that time I knew all the tricks needed to quickly calculate eigenvectors and eigenvalues, for example, never mind graph things.

Legacy Palm devices are the proverbial dime a dozen on eBay.

Side note: Not having degree-scaled arguments to trig functions is somewhat of a childish thing to complain about. Gimme a break, seriously (this is in maxima):


(%i13) dsin(x):=sin(x*%pi/180);
                      x %pi
(%o13) dsin(x) := sin(-----)
                        180
(%i14) dsin(5),numer;
(%o14) .08715574274765817

Re:How do you bring a Linux system to a test? (1)

snadrus (930168) | about 2 years ago | (#42294895)

The reason I was given in College was they didn't want any devices with memory so that we would need to know our own formulas. To use a TI Calculator, the teacher wanted to verify we wiped it before the tests.

SpreadSheet (1)

jbolden (176878) | about 2 years ago | (#42294159)

A calculate doesn't have the same form factor as a laptop / desktop. You are going to want to take advantage of that additional space.

A good deal of what you are asking for spreadsheets do. When you need more than that, throw me in as another vote for Sage to create something like a MathCad type environment. Also I agree bc is a good choice for quick and dirty manipulations.

The answer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294267)

This will do pretty much everything you want. Linux and Windows. Free. You are welcome.

http://en.smath.info/forum/

OT: SPIEGEL SIS Propanda (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294269)

Here is a nice example of how the establishment media is dumping hate on our posterchild "enemies:"

http://www.spiegel.de/kultur/gesellschaft/nordkorea-kim-jong-un-auf-foto-beim-raketenstart-a-872957.html#spCommentsBoxPager

(Use Google Translate to get an english version)

This is one of the "leading" German weekly magazines and I they regularly fall over themselves to regurgitate what they are fed by SIS and the company. When they Zionists call them for help they will certainly badmouth German weapons exports and kindly ignore that the prospective customer already have tons of kit from General Dynamics Land Systems, Boeing, BAE Systems and so on.

Here you can see what "free press" really means: Collusion with intel services to condition you, the sheeple, to accept the "truth" fabricated by those who feed the "free press" with some juicy scraps of information.
They call themselves "rational" but they are happy to engage into tea-leaf analysis of some Big-Mr-Kim photography. Mr Kim must be a nasty guy because he smokes a cigarette. It can't be because he is fucking nervous the current launch will be a failure. Of course not.
I am sure Mr Kim has his sort of nasty propaganda apparatus himself, but this SPIEGEL bullcrap clearly demonstrates what kind of lazy and cynical crap calls themselves "fourth estate".

Expensive Desk Calculator (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294329)

I recommend the Expensive Desk Calculator.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Expensive_Desk_Calculator

Andi Graph (1)

infernalC (51228) | about 2 years ago | (#42294363)

For that TI-8x look and feel...

I use Andi Graph. http://dougmelton.com/android/andie-graph/ [dougmelton.com] . It's free if you already own a TI calculator. If you don't, you are morally obligated to purchase a TI calculator so that you can say you've paid for the software. It is exactly like using a real TI-8x calculator except the buttons are not tactile.

It runs faster than a real TI-8x on an HTC One V phone, which is a low-end ICS phone. If you want to run it on a PC, get the Android emulator from Google.

If you don't have your cable to rip the ROM from your calculator, you can find the ROM using Google. I don't think there is a version for iOS.

Python with Pylab (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294441)

Python is expressive and really easy to use, and Pylab automagically gets you all the maths stuff and graphing capability.

Combination of tools (1)

jirka (1164) | about 2 years ago | (#42294511)

I think a combination of tools might be the answer. I use maxima (wxmaxima frontent) when I need a cas. I use my own software Genius [jirka.org] when I need to compute something numerically, and I often use it for in-class demonstrations (I often end up implementing whatever it is I need at some particular point). I can't remember when I last used octave, but that also sometimes happens when tehre's something genius can't do. I tried to make the interface to genius friendly, though of course there's always plenty of room for improvement. Generally it's a "command line" type interface, but I think it can do some pretty graphs. Too friendly tools generally end up being not very flexible. So it is worth it to spend a bit of time learning the less friendly ones.

By the way, I am getting ready to make a new genius release this weekend, I have just one more thing to do on my list before a release.

TI calculators are an essential for programming (1)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about 2 years ago | (#42294579)

TI Basic will make you grateful for any other language you will ever program in no matter how much that other language sucks more than your favorite one.

The answer. (1)

Ricyteach (2565289) | about 2 years ago | (#42294591)

Will do just about anything you need it to do. Windows and Linux. Free. You're welcome. http://en.smath.info/forum/yaf_postst1447_SMath-Studio-0-95-4594--30-July-2012.aspx [smath.info]

Re:The answer. (1)

Ricyteach (2565289) | about 2 years ago | (#42294677)

Oh sorry- it is called SMath Studio. Kind of relevant information to leave out.

Buy the software (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294635)

http://education.ti.com/calculators/products/US/Nspire-Family/Software
Or Derive if you can find it.

TI-Nspire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294665)

In high-school, my math teacher was one of the developers of TI-Nspire CAS, so we had to use that in class and during tests. Most of the class said that their understanding of the subject increased with the use of the programme as a lot of principles and theorems was easier to prove. But most of them struggle now, as they have started doing math at university, where one is not even allowed to use a graphic calculator.

If I were you, I would encourage your teacher to try to familiar him/herself with the programme and use it while teaching. I would also try not to use the graph function on you calculator other than for checking answers and understanding. At higher level math subjects, you have to show how you think on paper. And saying "According to my TI-84.." ain't gonna cover it!

IPython and SymPy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294847)

IPython (with matplotlib) would be great for plotting and equations, and sympy for symbolic manipulation.

One of Ti emulators? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294859)

There was TI emulator called tiemu (http://lpg.ticalc.org/prj_tiemu/) and TilEm (http://lpg.ticalc.org/prj_tilem/). Tiemu can emulate TI-89 and newer, and TilEm can emulate Ti82/84.

And I think maxima's lack of degrees support is not a problem, you can always do degrees to radian transformation by yourself, for example: http://www.math.utexas.edu/pipermail/maxima/2008/010584.html

Qalculate! (3, Informative)

BlackPignouf (1017012) | about 2 years ago | (#42294927)

I loved my TI 89 before I left outside one rainy night.
qalculate-gtk is my go to calculator on my linux boxes :
http://qalculate.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]
Don't let the website design scare you, it's a pretty decent calculator, and handles units very well (e.g. "10kWh to MJ")

Python / SciPy / NumPy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42294943)

Python / SciPy / NumPy is the answer if you want to learn something useful and get stuff done at home. The real answer, however, is that nobody needs a graphing calculator to learn math. It's faster to sketch a graph by hand and find its roots and turning points than it is to enter it into a TI-84 and have it plot.

The single reason to use a TI-84 is that you can (and are required to) take it into an AP Calc test, whereas you can't take your linux box, your phone, or some other real hardware, and the test includes several questions that require you to perform numerical integrations etc. on your calculator.

The only calculator I have ever owned is a $10 Sharp basic scientific calculator that I've had since I was 10. Last time its batteries ran out, I didn't replace them because it was easier just to type calculations into the google search box.

But will you be allowed to use it in exams? (1)

Kaenneth (82978) | about 2 years ago | (#42295009)

I know you specifically mentioned for use with homework, but you'll probably not be allowed to bring a laptop to an exam, and even if you know how to solve the problems, lack of practice using the de-facto 'official' calculator might slow you down.

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