**Date:** Sat, 26 Oct 2002 21:46:53 -0400

**Author:** "Tom Gill"

**Subject:** Re: What is a Vector Capable Calculator?

**Post:**

Vector capabilities are included in the TI-85 and TI-86 (and probably higher

ones also). You can enter a vector in the format [10<45] and have the

calculator perform operations on it (the "<" is actually an angle symbol).

Or you can enter the vector in rectangular form, [7.07,7.07].

It's pretty nice to be able to add and subtract vectors as easily as

scalars. Just typing in [10<45] + [5<120] gives either [12.3<68.2] or

[4.57,11.4] as an answer depending on the mode (polar, rectangular,

cylindrical, etc.) the calculator is in.

The danger may lie in teaching this too early to students, but it's great

for saving time once the concept is understood.

I haven't played with using vectors in the built-in solver that the

calculator has. I'm guessing that if I input an equation and then the

variables in vector format, that it would solve it. I don't generally teach

students to use the solver though, since it becomes a crutch too easily.

Tom Gill

Central Columbia HS