For ordinary folks, there’s Excel; for engineers, there are technical calculation programs like MathWorks MATLAB or PTC Mathcad. The latter are designed specifically for handling equations, formulas, and for importing these numbers into design programs. And they’re usually not cheap.
But this week, PTC is releasing a limited version of its Mathcad as Mathcad Express, a free-for-life software (PTC’s words). You can download it at the product page here.(“It’s a soft-ish launch,” wrote Lindsey Christensen, PTC’s marketing program manager.)
For the first 30 days, you get the full functions of PTC Mathcad Prime 2.0, the commercial product, priced $1,500 on PTC’s online store. After 30 days, the product becomes Mathcad Express, a limited-function version that’s free for you to keep. One of the limitations is watermarked documents.
The Express version does not include advanced numeric functions, programming, and Excel integration. To get those, you’ll need Mathcad Prime. Still, Express is a robust calculation program with basic numeric functions, equation editing, and X-Y plots. (For a comparison of features, visit PTC’s product page here.)
With its direct modeling product PTC Creo Direct, PTC also adopted a similar strategy: It offers PTC Creo Elements/Direct Express as a free teaser.