Name: kelly c lang
Status: N/A
Age: N/A
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: Around 1995

Question:
I am a 13 year old math student who enjoys math. I know using a computer
will be important for me in my future. What computer programs should I be
learning right now? So far I am good at using word processing. We do not
use the computer in our math classes at all. What should I try to learn on
my own at home? My parents said they would help me! Thanks for any advice.

Replies:I am not a mathematician myself, I am a chemist. However, I would suggest
that you learn at least one programming language. In Chemistry or other
branches of science Fortran has been the traditional language though C is
becoming more common. You might want to start with Basic which is probably
available on your home PC (assuming you have one!).

gregory r bradburn While I would agree that learning the basics of programming is a good
educational experience, you might be interested in something with more
immediate utility. I would start by asking the teacher of the most advanced
math courses at the high school you will attend about the types of calcula-
tors that are used to support those classes. Usually, some type of graphing
calculator would be expected. I think the TI82 is a good example and it is
programmable, so you could learn quite a bit about programming basics with
this calculator, too. Eventually, you should get some experience with a
good general purpose math utility software product that also has symbolic
capability. My favorite for beginners in this category is MathCAD 5.0 which
is available in a student edition for windows. Before it will be of much
use you will have to study math a few more years. Good luck with your
studies.

tee If you have an interest in matrices, MATLAB is a valuable software package
to have available. Although the program has the capability of doing the
usual scalar operations, its primary strength lies in the area of calcula-
tions associated with matrices. MATLAB has an excellent "Help" facility and
the graphics are superb! It is available for both PC's and MAC's.

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