In another life, I’m a math teacher. And for parents sending kids back to middle school and high school nowadays, math class often means purchasing an expensive graphing calculator. However, if your child’s teacher (or your teacher if you’re going back to school) is forward thinking enough and the school is okay with it, then you may be able to avoid carrying around two devices by using your Android as a graphing calculator. (Note that many schools have policies against kids having their cell phones on during the school day so be sure to check with your child’s school and the teacher on their policy. In most college classrooms it won’t matter, although come test time the phone may not be allowed.)
If you’ve already purchased an actual graphing calculator from Texas Instruments (a TI-82, 83, 85, or 86 work with the app), then Andie Graph might let you lighten the load in your bag a bit. Andie Graph allows you to grab the ROM from your already purchased graphing calculator, install it on your phone and then use Andie Graph in place of your calculator so you only have to carry one device. I’ve tried it with the TI-83, TI-85, and TI-86 and it works great. The folks at Andie Graph has a simple to follow procedure on their web site at http://supware.net/roms.
If you haven’t bought a graphing calculator, you might check out some other graphing alternatives to the full emulator that Andie Graph provides. My favorite is Grapher. There is no calculator function in grapher. However, it is quick and simple to compare multiple graphs. All of the options are hidden under the phone’s menu button so just push the menu button on your phone to get started using the app or just tap anywhere in the graph area.
Once you’ve made your first graph you can pan and zoom on the screen really easily with your fingers. Way better than having to set new windows on an actual graphing calculator. Another great feature of this app is the ability to save images of your graphs. I used this to build some graphs in my online class so students could see them. As a student I’d thing you could also insert them into homework assignments.
Do you have other back to school apps that help lighten the load of your backpack?