TweetFollow Us on Twitter

June 91 - Mathematics Computing at the University of Arizona

Mathematics Computing at the University of Arizona

Dale Curtis

INTRODUCING ACADEMIC DEVELOPERS

While developing educational software in a university setting, I found it difficult to discover what others were doing with object programming technologies, even at my own institution. I thought there might be other developers in a similar situation; so, I suggested to the MADA Board that we have an education column in FrameWorks, to allow developers at educational institutions who have object programming projects to find out what is happening elsewhere.

You know what happens to people who make suggestions: here I am! My hope is that those of us with similar interests will use the Academic Developers column to contact and assist each other, and find out about software targeted at the university level. I'll lead off with a synopsis of activities at my site.

UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA, MATHEMATICS DEPARTMENT

The Mathematics Department at the University of Arizona is involved with the education of over 14,000 students per semester. Of these, approximately 4,000 students per semester are in our two-year calculus sequence for science and engineering students: Calculus I, II, III, Ordinary Differential Equations, and Linear Algebra. We are in the process of remodelling this program so it will use computer technology for instructional purposes. The goal is to create an environment where the student:
  • Becomes comfortable using computers to explore, calculate, review, and to promote self learning.
  • Is challenged to think independently and to tackle a variety of problems which, because they are new to the student, do not have the artificial flavor of the overworked examples in present texts.

We've identified five non-traditional ways of using computers for instructional purposes:

  • To aid the instructor during class with slide shows, a collection of screen images of functions that are difficult to draw on the board; simulations, a collection of programs that simulate mathematical concepts that are otherwise difficult to perform in class; and demonstrations, which let the instructor present lengthy, but elementary, step-by-step calculations in class without the distraction of algebraic errors or loss of continuity due to time delay.
  • To aid students. The software can deal with complex calculations and aid in the development of mathematical intuition through support for graphical displays.
  • To encourage students to treat mathematics as an experimental subject. Students can change the values of variables and coefficients, alter equations, and see the effects numerically and graphically.
  • To capture the excitement of current developments in mathematics. For example, chaos in calculus, fractals in linear algebra, and modelling AIDS in ordinary differential equations.
  • To aid instructors and students during lectures and examinations. Since October 1989, our fully computerized classroom has drastically changed the way we teach, the problems we assign, and the way we test.

We have 35 packages to support these approaches. They were developed by students, working with faculty, within the context of a 3 credit hour semester course in math software development. The students were primarily math or engineering students who knew how to program in C.

Because the students had a time limitation, and were focusing on mathematics rather than programming, the packages were initially developed under MS-DOS. But in February, the mathematics department hired a full-time staff member (me) to-among other things-set up a development lab to include both IBM compatibles and Macintoshes.

INTRODUCING STUDENTS TO THE MACINTOSH

So, what is the best way to introduce students to developing on the Macintosh? We are working on that. For use by student and faculty developers, we have acquired the three Apple Developer University Self-Paced Training modules, plus AppMaker, MacApp, C++, and Think C. We have developed a prototype framework for several programs and are creating IBM-compatible display fonts so we can use the data files that drive the programs on both platforms.

Our experience in building this framework in Think C 2.0 using only Inside Macintosh Volumes I-III, without recourse to tools like MacApp, convinced us of the value of object programming! We anticipate using object programming technologies in rewriting the prototype and constructing another framework for a second set of programs, porting at least the C code that does the mathematics itself into Mac applications.

You might ask why we bother to develop on two platforms. The software we have developed is in the public domain so every student and educational institution can benefit from it, and availability on the two most popular platforms is important to widespread distribution. In the last six months, we have had requests for over 2,500 disks from universities and colleges throughout the country. The "Are You Ready" series of programs has generated requests from over 1000 academic institutions in Australia, Canada, Cyprus, England, France, Malta, New Zealand, Scotland, Wales, and the United States. Anyone interested in the software can contact me at the address appearing at the start of this column.

CALL FOR GUEST COLUMNISTS

In future columns, I plan to report on personal experience with development tools, software or development efforts that you let me know about, and relevant meetings or training opportunities. (Anybody want to send me to MacWorld in Boston?) I definitely want to use Academic Developers to showcase projects from other academic sites, so articles by guest columnists are very welcome. Please let me know what you want to see. Don't be bashful-see you here next issue!

 
AAPL
$118.93
Apple Inc.
-0.07
MSFT
$47.81
Microsoft Corpora
+0.06
GOOG
$541.83
Google Inc.
+1.46

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Adobe Photoshop Elements 13.0 - Consumer...
Adobe Photoshop Elements 12--the #1 selling consumer photo editing software--helps you edit pictures with powerful, easy-to-use options and share them via print, the web, Facebook, and more.Version... Read more
Skype 7.2.0.412 - Voice-over-internet ph...
Skype allows you to talk to friends, family and co-workers across the Internet without the inconvenience of long distance telephone charges. Using peer-to-peer data transmission technology, Skype... Read more
HoudahSpot 3.9.6 - Advanced file search...
HoudahSpot is a powerful file search tool built upon MacOS X Spotlight. Spotlight unleashed Create detailed queries to locate the exact file you need Narrow down searches. Zero in on files Save... Read more
RapidWeaver 6.0.3 - Create template-base...
RapidWeaver is a next-generation Web design application to help you easily create professional-looking Web sites in minutes. No knowledge of complex code is required, RapidWeaver will take care of... Read more
iPhoto Library Manager 4.1.10 - Manage m...
iPhoto Library Manager lets you organize your photos into multiple iPhoto libraries. Separate your high school and college photos from your latest summer vacation pictures. Or keep some photo... Read more
iExplorer 3.5.1.9 - View and transfer al...
iExplorer is an iPhone browser for Mac lets you view the files on your iOS device. By using a drag and drop interface, you can quickly copy files and folders between your Mac and your iPhone or... Read more
MacUpdate Desktop 6.0.3 - Discover and i...
MacUpdate Desktop 6 brings seamless 1-click installs and version updates to your Mac. With a free MacUpdate account and MacUpdate Desktop 6, Mac users can now install almost any Mac app on macupdate.... Read more
SteerMouse 4.2.2 - Powerful third-party...
SteerMouse is an advanced driver for USB and Bluetooth mice. It also supports Apple Mighty Mouse very well. SteerMouse can assign various functions to buttons that Apple's software does not allow,... Read more
iMazing 1.1 - Complete iOS device manage...
iMazing (was DiskAid) is the ultimate iOS device manager with capabilities far beyond what iTunes offers. With iMazing and your iOS device (iPhone, iPad, or iPod), you can: Copy music to and from... Read more
PopChar X 7.0 - Floating window shows av...
PopChar X helps you get the most out of your font collection. With its crystal-clear interface, PopChar X provides a frustration-free way to access any font's special characters. Expanded... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove, Sacred G...
Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove, Sacred Grove HD Review By Jennifer Allen on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad A decent new installment for the popular Mystery Case Files series.   | Read more »
Castaway Paradise – Tips, Tricks, and St...
Ahoy there, castaways: Were you curious about our own thoughts regarding this pristine shipwreck? Check out our Castaway Paradise review! Castaway Paradise is out for iOS, finally giving mobile gamers the opportunity to enjoy the idyllic lifestyle... | Read more »
Castaway Paradise VIP Subs are on Sale f...
Castaway Paradise VIP Subs are on Sale for a Limited Time, and a Special Holiday Update is Coming Soon Posted by Rob Rich on November 28th, 2014 [ | Read more »
Primitive Review
Primitive Review By Jordan Minor on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: FOLK ARTUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad True to its name, Primitive is about as straightforward as runners get.   | Read more »
7 tips to get ahead of the competition i...
7 tips to get ahead of the competition in Dynasty of Dungeons Posted by Simon Reed on November 28th, 2014 [ permalink ] Playcrab has launched their action-packed new dungeon crawler, Dynasty of Dungeons, today. | Read more »
Master of Tea Kung Fu Review
Master of Tea Kung Fu Review By Jordan Minor on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: ONE DROP RULESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Master of Tea Kung Fu is a creative and complex caffeinated brawler.   | Read more »
Monster Strike Review
Monster Strike Review By Campbell Bird on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: BILLIARD STRATEGYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Collect monsters and battle by flinging them across the battlefield in this strangely... | Read more »
Proun+ Review
Proun+ Review By Jennifer Allen on November 28th, 2014 Our Rating: :: TWITCHY RACINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Twitchy racing aplenty in Proun+, an enjoyably tricky title.   | Read more »
Lucha Amigos (Games)
Lucha Amigos 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Forget Ninja Turtles, and meet Wrestlers Turtles! Crazier, Spicier and…Bouncier! Sling carapaces of 7 Luchadores to knock all... | Read more »
Record of Agarest War Zero (Games)
Record of Agarest War Zero 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $7.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: HyperDevbox Holiday Turkey Black Friday Special Pricing! To celebrate the opening of the holiday season HyperDevbox... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Up To 75% Off Infovole Text Apps Over Black F...
Infovole’s entire range of apps, including the Textkraft family of word processors for iPads and iPhones, is being offered at 50-75% off over the Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend. The five-day... Read more
Black Friday: Up to $60 off Mac minis, NY tax...
 B&H Photo has new 2014 Mac minis on sale for up to $60 off MSRP as part of their Black Friday sale. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $449.99 $50 off... Read more
Black Friday: 27-inch 5K iMac for $2299, save...
 B&H Photo continues to offer Black Friday sale prices on the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac, in stock today and on sale for $2299 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP... Read more
Karalux Announces 24K Gold-Plated iPhone 6
Karalux, a Vietnam-based jewellery firm, has launched a unique 24 karat gold-plated iPhone 6 version with gold-cast monolithic dragon on its back panel. The real 24 karat gold plated enclosure doesn’... Read more
Black Friday: 13-inch 2.6GHz Retina MacBook P...
 B&H Photo has lowered their price for the 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro to $1159 for Black Friday. That’s $140 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price for this model (except for Apple’s $1099... Read more
View all the Black Friday sales on our Mac Pr...
We’ve updated our Mac Price Trackers with the latest information on prices, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers. View Black Friday sale prices at a... Read more
Black Friday: 11-inch MacBook Air for $779, s...
 Best Buy has lowered their price for the 2014 11″ 1.4GHz/128GB MacBook Air to $779.99 for Black Friday. That’s $120 off MSRP. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale... Read more
Apple Store Black Friday sale for 2014: $100...
BLACK FRIDAY The Apple Store has posted their Black Friday deals for 2014. Receive a $100 PRODUCT(RED) branded iTunes gift card with the purchase of select Macs, $50 with iPads, and $25 with iPods,... Read more
Black Friday: 15% off iTunes Gift Cards
Staples is offering 15% off $50 and $100 iTunes Gift Cards on their online store as part of their Black Friday sale. Click here for more information. Shipping is free. Best Buy is offering $100... Read more
BEVL Releases Dock Tailored for iPhone 6 and...
Seattle based BEVL has released their first product: an iPhone dock that is divergent in build quality, rock-solid function and visual simplicity to complement the iPhone. BEVL is now accepting... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
Senior Event Manager, *Apple* Retail Market...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global event strategy. Delivering an overarching brand story; in-store, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.