1  Introduction

rcalc is a fast, simple, symbolic calculator for GNOME.

rcalc features:

  • A list-based user interface, where each line represents an expression. You can move up, move down, remove, replace or inactivate lines to modify the whole session.

  • An easy-to-use calculator engine:

    • infix notation: expressions are entered as you would write them down, for example 1+3*sin(5) is evaluated as you would expect.

    • variables: this is where the 'symbolic' comes in; if you enter an expression such as a=1*2+3*4, the result is stored in a variable called a. This may then be used in further expressions, such as b=sqrt(a*5).

    • functions: you can define your own functions, e.g. f(x)=e^(abs(cos(x+b))), and use them just like built-in functions.

    • variables and functions persist between rcalc sessions until such time as you decide to delete them.

    • you can save your session to load it later.

rcalc is therefore not like other calculator programs, such as xcalc, kcalc or gcalc. It currently supports simple operators such as /, *, +, - and ^ (`raise to the power of'), as well as more complex functions like the trigonometric functions (sin, cos, tan, asin, acos and atan), the hyperbolic functions (sinh, cosh, tanh, asinh, acosh and atanh), sqrt, log, ln, abs and int. It also has two built-in constants, pi and e.

rcalc is not meant to be a complete mathematical package; simply a fast-loading, simple and convenient scientific calculator. If you want a complete heavy-duty maths solution, look at bc or Dr Genius (both free), or Matlab (commercial).