I am a fan of free apps and I have promoted a lot of them in this blog, but there are times that I also purchase premium apps. For the past few days, I have been exploring Wolfram Alpha for iOS which can be purchased in iTunes for $2.99. For those who have not heard about it yet, it is a knowledge engine developed by Wolfram Research. In layman’s words, it is an engine that answers factual queries and returns curated data rather than a list of files or web pages which is what search engines do. For example, if you search “primes between 1 and 100,” it returns the list of primes as shown below. To know more about Wolfram Alpha, you can read my introductory post about it here.
Wolfram Alpha covers a wide variety of topics. This includes mathematics, linguistics, dates and times, chemistry, money and finance, physics, health and medicine, engineering, geography, transportation, weather and meteorology, and many more.
Another unique feature of the iOS app is it is directly connected to Siri. You can just ask Siri about your queries and Siri will return answers from Wolfram Alpha. For devices without Siri, you can also type your queries. In iOS devices, a special keyboard with mathematical symbols appear every time you access Wolfram Alpha.
You can also download the FREE Wolfram Alpha Viewer to explore Wolfram Alpha results from Siri and learn how to use the commands effectively. You can also access Wolfram Alpha online.
For math contest enthusiasts, if you are preparing for MATHCOUNTS or other middle school and high school math contests, then the MATHCOUNTS Trainer App is a good app that you can try. The app contains thousand of problems from previous School, Chapters, and National Mathcounts. Note that all problems in this app have full solutions. For those who are not familiar with MATHCOUNTS, it is a nationwide mathematics competitions for middle school students in the United States.
In using this app, you can track your progress, compete with other players, and climb the Leaderboard.
The MATHCOUNTS Trainer app is FREE and available for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. It also works offline.
PhotoMath is a new app which allows users to scan a math expressions or equations using a phone camera in real time and solve them. As of this writing, the supported expressions/equations are the arithmetic operations (+, -, ×,÷), fractions, decimals, powers and roots, linear equations, powers and roots, quadratic equations, simple systems of linear equations. It also supports absolute value equations and inequalities. Below is a short introductory video about PhotoMath. PhotoMath from MicroBLINK on Vimeo. PhotoMath is available as an iOS, Android, Amazon and Windows Phone application.