Mathematica Tutor
Appendix:
Use of Palettes
In
Mathematica you may use palettes to simplify the entering of
commands. There are several of these palettes; the one that you will
probably use most often is the BasicInput Palette.
Each of the palettes may
be displayed by choosing the particular palette desired from the
Palettes submenu of the File menu. We will illustrate their
convenience by using them to enter and evaluate the integral of
exp(-x^{2}) from 0 to infinity.
Follow these steps in
order.
- Display the
BasicInput Palette.
- In the BasicInput
Palette, click on the definite integral button. You will see a
definite integral template with boxes at the places to enter the
limits of integration, the integrand, and the variable of
integration.
- The cursor is
positioned for you to enter the lower limit of integration. Type
0.
- Press the
Tab key. Notice that the cursor moves to the upper limit of
integration. In general, the Tab key cycles you through the
places in the template where entries are needed.
- You are now ready
to enter the infinity symbol. In the BasicInput Palette, click on
the infinity button -- the fourth button from the left in the
sixth row. Press the Tab key again.
- The cursor is
positioned for you to enter the integrand. In the BasicInput
Palette, click on the exponentiation button in the top left
corner. This is the button with a big box and a little box to its
upper right. Then click on the e button (the second button
from the left in the sixth row), press Tab, and type
-x^2 on your keyboard to complete the integrand.
- Press the Tab key one
more time to go to the specification of the variable of integration. Type
x. All of your boxes should now be filled in. Now,
if you press SHIFT-RETURN, Mathematica will calculate the value
of the integral.
As you can see, the
palettes offer templates for integration, differentiation, and other
operations and buttons for Greek letters and special math symbols.
They also provide templates for entering common matrices. For each
template, the Tab key cycles through the places where entries
are needed.