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Maths Object: Correntator

Here’s another one of my favourite maths objects: the Correntator. It’s a simple mechanical tool to add up amounts of money. I bought it for about a tenner (new money) at a market.

This video is extremely shonky. Blame my phone, which can’t bring itself to record for more than 250 seconds at a time.

More information about the Correntator.

Review: CALX, a calculator for iPhone

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Reader Danial Clelland wrote in to tell us about his new calculator app for iPhone, CALX.

None of us owns an iPhone, but I borrowed someone else’s for a while and had a brief look at the app.

App review: Tydlig, a calculator app for iOS

4-Interest

You may remember that we previously posted about Tydlig, a new calculator app for iOS. We asked if anyone would be interested in writing a review, and Aoife, who’s written the article below, kindly obliged.

Tydlig is a reimagined calculator on iOS and provides an innovative, freeform canvas where multiple calculations can be built and organised in one space. It functions as a scientific calculator, but on an open workspace that you can control, with additional visual features. Elegant in its simplicity, Tydlig captures all of the necessary components of a calculator, while maintaining refined and intelligible functionality.

Babbage’s difference engine is really, really pretty

Hands up if you knew there was a working replica of Babbage’s difference engine in California.

(My hand is not up.)

This glorious machine lives in the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. A company called xRez Studio, which specialises in taking extremely high resolution gigapixel photos of things, has taken some extremely high resolution gigapixel photos of the difference engine. They’re so lovely that it feels wrong to be looking at them at work.

Tydlig, a nice calculator for iOS

[youtube url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbXaKxxUomE]

Closer to a computer algebra system than a traditional calculator, this new app for iOS (iPhone and iPad) allows you to make calculations and create graphs, and mess around with the values to see what that does to the output. It looks like this is achieved without using any (explicit) symbolics, which results in a neat and pretty interface, made even nicer by the fact that you can move calculations around the screen and arrange them as you want. The name, Tydlig, is the Swedish word for ‘clear’.

If anyone’s willing to download a copy ($4.99 on the App Store) and try it out, we’d be interested to hear how easy it is to use, and what other nice tricks it’s got up its sleeve. Use the ‘Send something in’ link above to get in touch, or leave a comment below.

More information

Tydlig website

Tydlig on Twitter.

Google search adds a scientific calculator

Those who know things have known for a while that if you put simple-ish sums like sqrt(4^2+3^2) into Google, it’ll calculate the answer for you. Well, they’ve made life a little bit easier now with the addition of a set of scientific calculator buttons that appear whenever you enter a sum.

Oddly, you can only interact with the calculator by clicking the buttons, not by typing, so it was probably designed with touch devices in mind. It’s also missing an ANS button for using the previous result in further calculation. Anyway, someone’s bound to find it useful when they need a calculator in a pinch.

Google+