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laptop for writing equations

benderunitbenderunit Registered User Posts: 167 Junior Member
edited May 2006 in College Life
For all you engineering, science, and math majors, do you prefer specialized software on laptops that help you write down equations, or do you still prefer the traditional pen and paper method?
Post edited by benderunit on
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Replies to: laptop for writing equations

  • SlorgSlorg Registered User Posts: 2,009 Senior Member
    Pencil and paper.
  • UB-Vinny77UB-Vinny77 - Posts: 678 Member
    im an engineering student, only the failing students use laptops to take notes.

    I mean certain programs such as latex are good from small work, but its so much easier to write it out by hand.
  • makshimmakshim Registered User Posts: 313 Junior Member
    That's why you get a tablet. :-)
  • GyroidFanaticGyroidFanatic Registered User Posts: 166 Junior Member
    my tablet works fine for me
  • ee_stuee_stu Registered User Posts: 482 Member
    LOL, this is the funniest thread I've seen a long while. I'll like to see someone try and type a lengthy derivation onto their laptop! Personally, I use paper and pencil (not pen), even for programming lectures.
  • beck86njbeck86nj Registered User Posts: 805 Member
    Using LaTeX to take notes isn't bad once you're very familiar with it. I wouldn't suggest math lectures as a good time to try to get very familiar with it though.
  • j567pj567p Registered User Posts: 209 Junior Member
    well it depends on in what context you want to write out equations. if you just want to print out equations on paper, you can programs like mathematica or like they said, latex. but if you're doing this for notes in class, i'd go paper and pencil.
  • michunclemichuncle Registered User Posts: 630 Junior Member
    For math equations on a laptop, you have three choices:

    * LaTeX: a typsetting program for math and scientific publications.
    http://www.latex-project.org/

    * Mathematica: a math and science program that both prints and solves equations on a regular laptop or desktop.
    http://www.wolfram.com/products/mathematica/introduction.html

    * Xthink's Mathjounal: Designed for a Tablet PC, a math program that allows a user to write down formulas and equations on his Tablet screen and provides you with a solution.
    http://www.xthink.com/

    Or pencil and paper.
  • apumicapumic Registered User Posts: 1,529 Senior Member
    I would agree with the rest of these guys.
    Math/science courses are one of a few places where computers don't make much sense.

    Mike
  • drbottdrbott Registered User Posts: 272 Junior Member
    Yes, I'm definitely agreed about not using laptops for taking notes, unless one is very, very experienced with LaTeX (or MathType? I've never used it). But, for good-looking homework, it can never hurt to try LaTeX, given that everyone who's looking to go into academia in the sciences - or possibly even in some humanities disciplines - will need to learn LaTeX, sooner or later. LaTeX is a macro of Donald Knuth's TeX, which has a great website at http://www.tug.org/, if you're interested.
  • beck86njbeck86nj Registered User Posts: 805 Member
    I had to turn in things done in LaTeX as early as the second week of my freshman year. As far as writing up papers for math and science classes goes, what are you gonna use if you don't use LaTeX? Microsoft's equation editor?
  • GinPAGinPA Registered User Posts: 804 Member
    Mathmatica is pretty good
  • CitanCitan Registered User Posts: 2,287 Senior Member
    pencil and paper > *
  • mercurysquadmercurysquad Registered User Posts: 2,723 Senior Member
    use pencil/paper during lecture and usually also for homeworks.

    use mathematica or latex for writing lab reports or such things which need nicely written down equations.

    for humanities or such classes where you need to take down written paragraphs etc., use a laptop if you type faster than you write. then you will have searchable notes and you won't get tired writing so much.

    if you are good at mathematica shortcuts, you can probably use that to take notes during class, but there really is no need for that. and there is absolutely no reason to use latex during lecture. but if you have a tablet pc, then sure use it instead. then you get searchable notes and you also save some trees.
  • beck86njbeck86nj Registered User Posts: 805 Member
    there is absolutely no reason to use latex during lecture

    If your handwriting is illegible and your LaTeX skills rock, that's a pretty good reason.
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