Google Search Makes Graphing Math Functions Easy and Free

Students can now plot mathematical functions including trigonometric, exponential and logarithmic, using Google search.

Simply type in a function and Google will show you an interactive graph at the tip of the search results page. You can zoom in and out across the plane to explore the function in more detail and also plot multiple functions.

"I still recall the day when my friend Yossi came to school and showed off his brand new graphing calculator," Google Engineer Adi Avidor writes on the Google Inside Search blog. "I was stunned by how easy it was to plot complicated functions -- meanwhile, the rest of us were still drawing them by hand on graph paper."

While there are a number of free and paid mobile apps that function like graphing calculators, which can cost up to $167 for a fully functional tool by Texas Instruments, Google's entrance into the market might soon make graphing calculators become obsolete. 

LAUNCH has contacted teachers to see what they think about the use of Google in classrooms and educational platforms like Khan Academy. We will update this story when we receive more information.

Additionally, computational knowledge engine Wolfram Alpha offers similar tools like Mathematic 8, which lets users enter plain English to get immediate mathematical results, but costs $44.95 per semester for students. Wolfram Alpha does, however, also provide a free version of its product through its web browser

"Is this direct competition to Wolfram Alpha? Can Siri do this (joke)?" +Sebastian Ventura writes. "How smart is Google getting?"

In late November, Google revealed the evolution of search, which has evolved with 6K+ improvements since starting as a research project in 1996. Recent advancements include search by images, real-time search results in October the launch of Direct Connect search feature to let users bypass traditional search results when looking for a brand on Google+.