Electronic Proceedings of the Twelfth Annual International Conference on Technology in Collegiate Mathematics

San Francisco, California, November 4-7, 1999

Paper P012

Microsoft COM for Complex Variables

G. Boyd Swartz

Department of Mathematics
Monmouth University
W. Long Branch, NJ 07724

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Complex numbers are composed of two real quantities. Arithmetical operations on such manipulate the two and produce results using real arithmetic. We usually program this one quantity at a time. However in a course focused on Complex Variables this is unproductive work for the participants. We create for them a component that allows reference to a complex number and its arithmetic by normal programming constructions. The technology that allows us to do this with ease is the Microsoft COM technology for encapsulating a data structure and its operations in a programming unit that can be referenced in a program. The component is used in Visual Basic Application (VBA is the macro language for Excel) to compute the complex output of a bandpass filter and to plot the output.

Keyword(s): complex variables, spreadsheets, programming