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From one perspective, mathematics is the art of creating knowledge by finding new and interesting relationships among existing mathematical objects. Sketchpad provides you with a rich set of such mathematical objects and with many ways to connect them. It’s up to you to create those objects, set up the connections between them, and determine their attributes. Then you can investigate their behavior, find new relationships, discover symmetry and patterns, and display and present your results.

Here’s a list of the objects that Sketchpad makes available:

Geometric Objects:


Segments, Rays, and Lines



Polygons and Other Interiors


Pictures and Drawings

Iterations (some iterations are numeric)

Numeric and Algebraic Objects:





Coordinate Systems


Function Plots

Parametric Plots

Presentation Objects:


Angle Markers

Tick Marks

Action Buttons

Object Categories:

Certain categories of objects can be used for special purposes.

Path Objects are objects on which you can construct and animate points.

Straight Objects are path objects that you can use to construct parallels and perpendiculars. You can measure the slope of a straight object and the distance from a point to a straight object.

Layered Objects occupy two-dimensional area and appear in a layered order when they overlap.

Translucent Objects have adjustable opacity, allowing similar objects in layers below them to show through.

Values are objects that you can use in situations when you need a numeric value.

Plots are displayed by combining many small elements (called samples) that make up the full object. These objects include loci and function plots, among others.

Text Objects include captions, values, functions, and action buttons.