Your computer’s built-in calculator app acts like an old pocket calculator and it’s kind of weird.
Your computer’s word processor doesn’t pretend to be a physical sheet of paper, insisting that you draw words instead of typing them. Your computer’s Contacts app doesn’t require you to turn virtual pages or limit the number of entries that begin with a particular letter. Why, then, do stock calculator apps insist on being an on-screen recreation of a 60s electronic device, with all the same limitations?
There are better calculator apps out there – they look more like text documents than pocket numeric keypads and are much easier to use.
These apps, which you can call notepad calculators, let you write equations and see the answer in real time, while offering features like natural language analysis, unit conversations, and even built-in connections to calculate things like currency values. . These tools allow you to type “16 tablespoons in cups” and get an actual answer.
(It’s a mug, in case you were wondering).
Numi is one of the first notebook calculators I noticed and my favorite. You can perform simple calculations using the app like a normal calculator. Just type the operation and you will see the result. But Numi also supports natural language, so when you type “6k divided by 12” you will also get a correct answer.
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According to the developers, Numi supports every unit of distance, length, area, and volume you can think of, percentages, time zones, currencies, and cryptocurrencies, as well as various trigonometry functions. So, for example, the platform can determine what is 3 inches in centimeters, what is 5% of 123, how much is $20 in euros, or what is the price of one Bitcoin. There’s also a lot more to dig into here, including the ability to define variables early in the document and use them later.
Numi is free to download for macOS. The full version, including unlimited notes and iCloud synchronization, is available for a one-time payment of $20.
Parsify is very similar to Numi but is also available for non-Macs. You can write equations and use natural language in the left panel, and the results will display on the right. This platform also supports tabs, which means you can open multiple documents at once.
According to Parsify’s documentation, this app supports unit conversions, currencies and cryptocurrencies, and time zones. As with Numi, you can use “prev” to extract the solution from the previous line and define variables at the beginning of the document to insert them later.
Parsify is free to download for Windows, macOS, and Linux, but limits files to just five lines. The full, unlimited version will cost you $29.
Evaluator is different from the other apps on this list. You can make it run in the background and summon it by pressing the Alt + Space keyboard shortcut. A small window will appear in the middle of the screen for you to calculate some numbers.
You can type all the mathematical operations you want to solve and you will see the answers in real time. If you hit Walk inEvaluator will copy the last answer to your clipboard, so you can paste it into any other application, which is handy if you’re working with a spreadsheet.
Evaluator doesn’t offer as many bells and whistles as the apps above – there’s no currency support, and it can’t handle natural language. But he makes up for that by always being ready and being the fastest number cruncher in the west.
Appraiser is free to download for Windows and macOS.
NumPad runs entirely in the browser, which means you can start using it without installing anything. Its use is completely free and you can even share your files with other people. Just click on the icon To share button to copy a link.
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Open the site and you will immediately see the documentation, which you can even modify to learn more about all the features of the platform. The numeric keypad can perform basic calculations, unit and currency conversions, percentages, and more. There’s even support for calculating dates – for example, you can type “December 25, 2022 – 80 days” to find out when 80 days before Christmas is. The app also supports the keyboard shortcuts you use in the Vim and Emacs text editor, if you’re interested in that sort of thing.
Numeric keypad is free and available on the web.
Other Ways to Calculate Numbers Quickly
In fact, you don’t need a dedicated app to perform quick calculations. Here are some other ways to let the machines do the heavy lifting for you:
- google search. Type and search any equation to get the answer, including things like unit or currency conversions.
- Windows start menu. Open the Start menu and type any equation to see the result appear in the right panel. It’s a bit slow but it works.
- Spotlight on macOS. Type command + spacebar to bring up the default search tool and type any equation to instantly see the answer.
- Voice assistants. If you’re the kind of person who prefers to do math out loud, the Google Assistant, Alexa, and Siri can all answer basic math questions.