Multivariable Calculus--Math 236
MWF 10:30-11:20 -- SC 1314
OnCourse - where I post activities and less public course information, such as:
- Background Questionnaire for you to fill out
- Study Guides
- Additional Course readings
- Daily assignments
- Portions of each week's problem set
Tips on Getting Through the First Week of Class
- Suggestions for Reading a Math Book
In Class Work
- Etiquette for using computers during class
- We'll be dealing with a lot of 3 dimensional concepts. It can be helpful to be able to picture these, and graphing calculators aren't going to be enough.
You will find the following two options useful off and on throughout the semester.
- The Multivariable Calculus Exploration applet is a very cool free on-line applet for graphing in 3D. It allows you to quickly graph up to four 3D surfaces on the same set of axes, look at the surfaces from different viewpoints, and then trace the movement of points along the surface, show a tangent plane at a point, and then look at various different lines related to multivariable differentiation -- all without calculating the planes or lines.
- Maple is a very powerful Computer Algebra System. While it does take a bit of time to learn, it's not very hard and can do alot. In addition to graphing 3D surfaces and curves, it also will do alot of calculations for you, and allow you to do a lot of advanced graphing. On the other hand, it does not easily do what the Multivariable Calculus Exploration applet does, so they complement each other nicely.
As long as your computer is connected to the campus network (wireless is okay) and your computer has a recent enough operating system, you may use Maple on it. Here are
instructions for downloading Maple
onto your computer, be it Mac or PC.
- The new versions of Maple have gotten very interactive and intuitive -- so much so that it's hard to write instructions. That being said, I've made a stab at it. Many of the tasks we'll want to do are not interactive, and so I've included a list of commands as well in this introduction to Maple, and a list of some handy Maple commands. It's not completely updated for Maple 15 yet, but it should give you a good place to start, at any rate.
- Mike Pepe of Seattle Community College has created a set of Maple tutorials called Maple Essentials . They were created for a significantly older version of Maple, but are still useful. If you're using a PC, right-click on the link and select Save Target As ... and save the file to the desktop. If you're using a Mac, control-click or right-click on the link and select Save Linked File to Desktop. Then locate the file MapleEssentials.zip on your desktop and double-click on it to open it. (On a Mac, this creates a folder called Maple Essentials on your desktop, that you then open to find all the tutorial files).
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Norton, Massachusetts 02766-0930
TEL (508) 286-3973
FAX (508) 285-8278
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