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Tip of the Day
Language: Visual Basic
Expertise: Beginner
Aug 21, 1997

Entering Scientific Formulas

I have developed this technique to use when I program long formulas. First, I declare descriptive variables for the mathematical elements. I prototype the formula using the digit "1" as a place holder for the variables. This allows me to review the structure of the formula and make sure it compiles. I keep a copy of the formula as an inline comment. I replace the place holders with the variable by using cut and paste. This is an example that calculates the volume of a cap of a sphere:
 
Public Const PI = 3.141592653589
Dim CapVolume As Single
Dim SphereRadius As Single
Dim CapHeight As Single
'Sample values
SphereRadius = 9.35
CapHeight = 3.33
'Formula as prototype which is left in 
'the code for the volume of the cap of a sphere
'CapVolume = PI * 1 * 1 * (3 * 1 - 1) / 3
CapVolume = PI * CapHeight * CapHeight _
	* (3 * SphereRadius - CapHeight) / 3
'Reality check
Debug.Print CapVolume
Stan Mlynek
 
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