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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.

billrob



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