A good electronic math notebook?

Thread Starter

prophoss

Joined Feb 26, 2019
25
I am currently taking cal2 and I have been taking notes using 0ne note. It is not bad but its math ability is very limited. I can open a word.doc and use that for the equations then copy and paste, but that is time consuming and not very easy. The best one for creating equations is whatever my school uses on their forum boards for discussion, but I have no clue what that is. I currently attend DeVry university online. I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a good online or downloadable program for taking math notes with the ability to write equations?
 

pmd34

Joined Feb 22, 2014
503
Many of the maths guys swear by "latex" the software not the fetishware!!
https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/LaTeX/Mathematics

Its what the majority of people like to write theses in but it can be a bit hard to get into. More like the old style word processing or HTML coding that uses "tags" at the start and end of lines to do the formatting. If your planning on staying in academia at least it might be worth getting the hang of.

There are a few visual interfaces that can make the more common features clickable. Such as:
https://www.lyx.org/
 

bogosort

Joined Sep 24, 2011
458
I am currently taking cal2 and I have been taking notes using 0ne note. It is not bad but its math ability is very limited. I can open a word.doc and use that for the equations then copy and paste, but that is time consuming and not very easy. The best one for creating equations is whatever my school uses on their forum boards for discussion, but I have no clue what that is. I currently attend DeVry university online. I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a good online or downloadable program for taking math notes with the ability to write equations?
As mentioned in the previous post, LaTex is the professional standard. That said, Microsoft's equation editor is quite good, so if you're already familiar with it, why not just use Word to keep your notes? Once you learn the mark-up tags (e.g., '\int' for an integral), you can very quickly write professional-looking math expressions without ever touching the mouse.
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
10,055
With Latex, can you take notes on the fly while following a teacher's class?
Even with the advent of notebook computers, I still took notes the old fashioned way. The way I organized thoughts on paper became a mnemonic device. I've seen people try to type notes and it was hilarious to watch the people who couldn't touch type. One particular vice president spent most of the time he was typing hitting the backspace key.

Some managers had a laptops off policy in meetings. I know why. I've seen people sitting next to me browsing the internet when they should have been paying attention to what was going on in the meeting. I once sat next to the CEO of our company at a meeting and he used pen and paper for note taking (but his pen had an LED in it so he could see in a darkened room).

I carried my laptop to all meetings, but it was usually off. The only time it was on was when I was projecting the meeting or needed to get information in real time.
 

Thread Starter

prophoss

Joined Feb 26, 2019
25
So latex is a mark up language? How do you use it? Can you use it in say VS code editor? I like the idea of it and it doesn't seem to hard, but not sure how to use it.
It may be a bit much though trying to master latex while learning Calculus. The idea is simplicity. I like the electronic notebook because it is easier to find my notes later on when I need them. I actually tend to write then type. I might be able to use it for my homework to turn it in. Right now I am writing the problems down and scanning them to turn them in to my teacher. Be worth looking into.
 

bogosort

Joined Sep 24, 2011
458
Hola bogosort

With Latex, can you take notes on the fly while following a teacher's class?
Hola atferrari,

It's certainly possible, roughly equivalent to marking up notes in HTML as you write them. That said, when I was in school I wrote my class notes in pencil and then, later when I was home, transcribed them to pretty electronic form. Twice the work, but it helped reinforce the lecture material.
 

bogosort

Joined Sep 24, 2011
458
So latex is a mark up language? How do you use it? Can you use it in say VS code editor? I like the idea of it and it doesn't seem to hard, but not sure how to use it.
It may be a bit much though trying to master latex while learning Calculus. The idea is simplicity. I like the electronic notebook because it is easier to find my notes later on when I need them. I actually tend to write then type. I might be able to use it for my homework to turn it in. Right now I am writing the problems down and scanning them to turn them in to my teacher. Be worth looking into.
Yes, LaTeX is a markup language and requires a LaTeX-aware editor. There's a free plugin for VS Code that looks pretty good:
https://marketplace.visualstudio.com/items?itemName=James-Yu.latex-workshop

As you're not proficient in either LaTeX or calculus, I would start by taking class notes in pencil, focusing your attention on trying to understand what the instructor is talking about. Later, before you do your homework, transcribe your notes into LaTeX. It will be slow-going at first, but calculus notation is quite repetitive and you'll soon become proficient at formatting typical calculus equations. Do your homework in pencil, then transcribe it to LaTeX; if you have to turn in homework assignments, your instructor will love you. By mid-semester, you should be able to do your homework almost entirely in LaTeX.

It's more work at first, but it will serve you well as you continue your studies (and beyond).
 

Thread Starter

prophoss

Joined Feb 26, 2019
25
Yes, LaTeX is a markup language and requires a LaTeX-aware editor. There's a free plugin for VS Code that looks pretty good:
https://marketplace.visualstudio.com/items?itemName=James-Yu.latex-workshop

As you're not proficient in either LaTeX or calculus, I would start by taking class notes in pencil, focusing your attention on trying to understand what the instructor is talking about. Later, before you do your homework, transcribe your notes into LaTeX. It will be slow-going at first, but calculus notation is quite repetitive and you'll soon become proficient at formatting typical calculus equations. Do your homework in pencil, then transcribe it to LaTeX; if you have to turn in homework assignments, your instructor will love you. By mid-semester, you should be able to do your homework almost entirely in LaTeX.

It's more work at first, but it will serve you well as you continue your studies (and beyond).
I have downloaded all the stuff and will give it a try. I do actually take notes in pencil then transfer them afterward. Like I said I use one-note for ease of finding what I need later. Like, when I'm taking a test or another class that I need to remember something from a previous class.
My classes are only 8 weeks long and that makes it all a bit of a rush, but I will give it a try. Sounds useful, and I have used several markup languages before so it should't be to hard.
Thanks y'all,
Brian
 

dl324

Joined Mar 30, 2015
10,055
My classes are only 8 weeks long and that makes it all a bit of a rush
I strongly suggest that you ask DeVry for graduation and placement statistics and get a list of companies where they've placed graduates. Then contact recruiters at some of those companies to verify that they hire DeVry graduates.

My first technician job was at HP and the supervisors and techs considered people who went to DeVry to be undesirable.

Things may have changed in the last 10 years, but when I interviewed people, I never saw any resumes from online schools. But I was interviewing people MS and PhD degrees. It was rare to interview people with BS degrees for full time positions; just internships. Even then, they were BS working on MS degrees.
 
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Thread Starter

prophoss

Joined Feb 26, 2019
25
A little update on the LaTex. I have been using it and, in my opinion, it is much easier to deal with than the word equation stuff. It is far less tedious. I picked it up fairly quickly and with the help of a couple of youtube videos I am up and running.
I would not use it for note taking, but for homework it is great.
 
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