EZ Math Movie, Description

What is this site about?

EZ Math Movie is a Web application that helps you explore and learn mathematics. Think of it as an animated piece of graph paper. You control the animation with mathematics expressed through the statements and commands in the EZ Math Movie language code. You alter that code and see the effects on the graph. The EZ Math Movie code is easy to learn, and with it you can work with mathematics at simple through advanced levels.

For example, the equation of a line can be written in slope-intercept form like this:

y = mx + b

In this equation m is the slope and b is the y-intercept. EZ Math Movie lets you draw this function and easily change the values for m and b. You could then immediately see how different values for m changed the slant of the line. You could see how changing b moved the line up an down.

What is programing?

When you program, you type in commands from a computer language into some type of text editor. Then you run the program, usually by clicking a button. The computer will then read what you typed, one statement at a time, from the top to the bottom. If you correctly typed in the commands, the computer will understand them and do the job that they describe.

Basically, you have to know the commands in the language that you are using in order to get anything done. EZ Math Movie contains a computer language that is aimed at exploring mathematics. It is easy to learn, fun to use, and is explained in the Tutorials section and the Language section of this site.

Continue reading the sections on this page to see how programing works in EZ Math Movie.

Who is the audience?

The audience is any person who finds mathematics interesting, and who would like to better their understanding of coordinate geometry and functions on the (x, y) plane.

Students in high school and early college will find the types of problems that are covered in their math courses can be expressed with EZ Math Movie.

Who is the author?

The author of the EZ Math Movie site is Edward A. Zobel, who also authors Zona Land Education.

Why is this?

Normal textbooks can only display mathematics with static diagrams. Often these diagrams are drawn using only one set of parameters for the problem at hand. A computer running EZ Math Movie, though, will let you easily change all the parameters of the situation while exploring all the 'what if' types of variations in your current scheme. This ability lets you test your assumptions and get immediate feedback on their validity. This check can lead to more thoughts, and these new thoughts can then be tested, and those tests can further generate other ideas, and so on. EZ Math Movie lets you play with and explore mathematics using this type of feedback loop.

A picture is worth a thousand words. And an animated picture that you can vary and control is worth a thousand more.

How does this work?

EZ Math Movie consists of a group of panels. These panels can be made visible or hidden by clicking on the checkboxes that are located on the visibility control. The visibility control is always present, and it looks like this:

Visibility panel

The visibility control has several checkboxes. These checkboxes control the visibility for the several panels that make up EZ Math Movie. Here is a description of each panel:

You can also start, pause, resume, and stop your program from the visibility control using the four buttons to its far right. These are the same runtime controls that are seen on the graph and printer panels.

Several sections

The menu at the top and bottom of each page contains links to the different sections within this site. Here are the explanations for many of these sections:

The Examples section showcases some EZ Math Movie programs. If you are a beginner, you are not supposed to understand this material right off the bat. This section gives you a small view of some of the capabilities of EZ Math Movie.

The Tutorials section is where to go if you are just starting out. Go through all of the tutorials from start to finish in order, since they are designed to be used that way. When you are done with the tutorials, you should have a very good idea about how to run EZ Math Movie.

The Language section gives a detailed description of all the important commands that you can use in your EZ Math Movie programs.

The Applications section contains links to a sister Web Site, Zona Land Education. Jump into Zona Land using these links and see EZ Math Movie used to explain many important topics in mathematics and physics.

The News section contains announcements concerning recent additions to and uses for EZ Math Movie.

Order of code execution

There are three sections of code in EZ Math Movie: the Before Loop code, the Loop code, and the After Loop code. When you start your program by clicking the 'Go' button, these code sections start to execute. The Before Loop code happens at first and happens once. Next, the Loop code cycles again and again until you quit it by clicking the 'Stop' button or by using the stop command. After stopping the Loop code, the After Loop code happens last and happens once. Here is a diagram that shows this sequence:

Code execution order

Go and stop

At the far right of the visibility control panel you will see four buttons. You will also see these four buttons at the top of the Graph and Printer panels. The first of these buttons is the 'Go' button.

The 'Go' button looks like this:

When you click the 'Go' button, your EZ Math Movie program will start, and the Before Loop and Loop code sections will execute as described earlier. You can not edit any of your program code while the program is running. You will notice that any visible code panels change colors during the program run to indicate this.

The last of these four buttons is the 'Stop' button. When clicked, it will cause the Loop code to quit cycling and cause the After Loop code to execute once.

The 'Stop' button looks like this:

As you will learn in the Tutorials section, you can also stop your program with the stop command. This command has the same effect as clicking the 'Stop' button. After stopping your program, you can edit any of the code panels.

Pause and resume

Between the 'Go' and 'Stop' buttons are the 'Pause' and 'Resume' buttons. After clicking the 'Go' button, you can pause your program with the 'Pause' button.

The 'Pause' button looks like this:

Clicking the 'Pause' button will temporarily halt the cycling of the Loop code. You can edit any of the code panels while the program is paused.

After pausing your program, you can continue the cycling of the Loop code by clicking the 'Resume' button. If you changed nothing, this will cause the program to pick up where it left off when the 'Pause' button was clicked. If you changed any Loop code or options while the program was paused, then these changes will be reflected when the program is resumed.

The 'Resume' button looks like this:

Once your program is resumed, you can not edit any of the code panels.

You can go at any time.

The 'Go' button is always available. Clicking it at any time will restart your program by running the Before Loop code once, and so on as described earlier.

Running the example program

The example program on this page shows all of the panels within EZ Math Movie, although not all of the panels are used by this example program. Unused panels are automatically hidden in the other example programs you will find on this site. You can always hide or show any of the panels for any EZ Math Movie program by clicking the appropriate checkbox on the visibility control panel described earlier.

Click the 'Go' button to see a projectile motion demonstration.

The example program

Angle measurement: Degrees Radians

Go on input

Sorry, apparently this browser does not support HTML 5 canvas tag graphics.

Edit: Runtime          View: Starter Suggestion

To runtime:


Editor width: Normal Wide







All contents of EZ Math Movie are copyrighted: Copyright 2011, Edward A. Zobel. All rights reserved.

Other sites you may find interesting

Zona Land Education Like Math and Physics?

Zona Land Education offers explanations, diagrams, and animations on these topics.
And it is all presented in a clear and casual manner.

Here is the link: zonalandeducation.com

EZ Programing Demos Want to learn about programing computers?

EZ Programing Demos has an animated, slow motion, interactive programing language demonstrator.
The site presents basic ideas at a beginner's level.

Here is the link: ezprogramingdemos.com

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