Math, you use addition, subtraction, multiplication and division on four
digits to reach a particular target. In the picture above, the digits
are 2,8,8,9 and you must manipulate these to get a result of 24. If you
get stuck, click on the Hint button to get hints on the solution. When you
do get the solution, Spiro Math draws a spirograph as your reward. Spirographs are nifty graphical figures like
the one behind the problem pad in the picture above.
SpiroMath 4 requires Windows XP or Vista and is free software.
There is no Mac version available.
One day, Pete came
trucking in the door from school with news of a game his whole
class was playing. The 24 Game consists of a deck of cards, each card
with four digits on a side. The idea is to use multiplication, addition,
division and subtraction on the four digits to arrive at a result of 24.
We played the game together, and I liked it, but every once in a while,
I would get stuck. This got
frustrating and I thought, “How can I use my computer to
solve this problem.”
With a evening's work, I was able to print out a list of all
possible four digit combinations that can be made to yield 24. There are
398 of them, if you don’t count different combinations of the same
digits. 9530 if you do. Now I had my list and would never be stuck
again. I also had a database of possible problems and started to think
of computer games I might make using the idea of the 24 Game. I
visited the library the next day and found that there are many games
like this. As a class, they are called MADS games (Multiply, Add,
Divide, Subtract) and I set about writing my own.
For months after its completion,
Pete kept his math
skills in good shape
by playing Spiro Math for 15 minutes each day