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What is the best Maths software to learn and grow?

Do you have Maths homework? How do you know that your results are OK? This article is going to teach you how to use easy-to-use, free-of-charge software to check that your calculations are correct

  1. Download and install it. Every time you download and install some software, make sure your parents are supervising you.
  2. Run Microsoft Mathematics.
  3. Select Equation Solver, Unit Converter or Triangle Solver.
  4. If you selected Unit Converter, click the type of measurement you are converting (Length), the units (from inches to centimetres), type the quantity (Input), and press the button calculate.
Microsoft Mathematics

Microsoft Mathematics

You can use Maxima as a fast and reliable calculator (5.23*4.25;). You can find the prime factorisation of a given number (factor(420);), get the irreducible fraction equivalent to a given fraction (12/56;), and do arithmetic with fractions (6/5+9/6;).

Once you have defined your polynomials (p: 4*x^2 -1, q: 6*x^2+x+1), you can operate with them (p+q, 2*p-q), and simplify them. ratsimp(%); asks Maxima to simplify the last expression.

Observe in the screenshot how Maxima can factor some polynomials (factor(p); expresses the polynomial -p- as the product of polynomial expressions (x-3)(x+2)) or expand them (in other words, it asks Maxima to carry out the operations to simplify the expression).

Maxima can solve algebraic equations, too. The polynomial p has two roots (solve(p,x); returns 3, -5), so it can be expressed (factor(p);) as (x-3)(x+5).

Maxima

Maxima

It gives you graphical feedback, so you can always see and understand what you are doing. It runs on Windows, GNU/Linux, and macOS, but it requires the installation of the Java Runtime Environment. If you use Ubuntu or other Debian-based distributions, type this command in your terminal: sudo apt install jfractionlab.

Launch it (JFractionLab), and select one category: Clicking the numerator, Defining or comparing fractions, or Extending fractions. JFractionLab

JFractionLab

Observe that 36 is the fraction that is represented in the screenshot. The pie is divided into six parts and there are only three pieces which are colored yellow.

It allows you to do: basic mathematical operations (2.5*3.5); percentages (50% of 220); units (45 cm to inches, 38 Celsius to Fahrenheit), and currency conversions (21 dollars into Euros); conversions between different numerical systems (12 in binary, 12 in octal, 12 in roman), etc. You can now plot functions in Google’s search engine, too.

Wolfram Alpha can calculate just about anything. It can do arithmetic on fractions (1/2 * (3 + 3/5)), solve equations (solve x^2 − 7*x + 12=0), plot 2d and 3d functions or compute indefinite and definite integrals of one or more variables (integrate x^2 + sin^2 x dx).

For instance, given a decimal number (0.5) or an improper fraction (improper fractions are those whose numerator is greater than the denominator, 11⁄4), WolframAlpha returns its equivalent fractions (12, 2 34) and represents them in the Number Line.

  1. Download it from its webpage (Gnuplot).
  2. Get the latest stable version for your operating system.
  3. Launch it.
  4. Define the function (f(x)=x**3 + 2*x**2 -5*x -6 where x**3 means raise x to the power of three, x3) and ask gnuplot to plot it (plot(f(x)). It is a little difficult, but it is incredibly powerful and available free of charge!
Gnuplot

Gnuplot

GeoGebra is both an online web application and an o ine downloadable application. You only need to use the appropriate tools in the Toolbar to create geometric constructions on the Graphics View with your mouse. For example, select Line, click twice on the Graphics View and you will get two points (A, B) and a line.

Geogebra

Geogebra

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