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We should start bugging people of the franchise to open-source the Genie engine

Gregstein said:

if Voobly wants to get back on business They can make Freeage happen at least before all players slowly abandon them for AoE2 DE.

Click to expand…

Given the fact that everything was pretty much hardcoded in FreeAge (modding made hard in long-term), besides the problem of distributing copyrighted material, I don’t think that this way would have been a reliable way “back to business” (assuming you think Voobly is out of business, which I don’t think they are).

FreeAge was making much progress in short time because of the design decisions and hardcoding, which would not have been a solution to the “constrainedness”/or the shortcomings of the Genie engine. It was meant to be fast progress at the expense of sophisticated modding capabilities which would just solve the P2P-issues and the performance stuff of AoE2-style games, but not really be a solution towards the modding community. So in the end to make it considerably better moddable it would need a lot of effort and time.

CH_Wired_ said:

They should! I think nagging MS for the Genie engine source code is a great idea, but OpenAge is likely to be the way forward for us regardless.

Click to expand…

Indeed, I also think openage would be the way forward, but I also need to say, that it will take a lot of time before it’s in a playable state somehow. I’m talking about a few years. The open-sourcing of the Engine could give AoE2 the option to make some things better immediately without waiting until openage replaces Genie engine and its’ games – and I’m pretty sure it will. In about 2-5 years from now on people that want to play any versions of AoE1/AoE2/SWGB will most likely play it on some version of openage and some network providing multiplayer services for it.

 

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20 great free and open source music making programs


Freedom fighters...

Freedom fighters…

Who doesn’t love free software? Still, you might be unaware that “free” doesn’t always mean free in the sense you might expect.

There are important distinctions between what we call “freeware” and what is known as “free software”, “free and open source software” or “free, libre and open source software”.

The main difference is in the definition of the word “free”, which has multiple meanings. Freeware is provided at no cost – so it is free in that sense – but are you free to do anything you like with it? Can you re-distribute it without the developer’s permission? The answer is usually no.

However, this isn’t always the case. Some free software is free as in “freedom”, meaning not only that it (probably) costs nothing but, more crucially, that you’re free to do whatever you like with it. You can re-distribute it however you like, or even tap into the code and change it to suit your needs. Yes, developers of such software make the source code freely available to any and all to do with as they like. This is what the term “open source” is all about.

More importantly, some free software doesn’t involve restrictive end user license agreements. As free software advocates like to point out, we’re talking about free as in “free speech” not just free as in “free beer”.

In the gallery ahead of you we’ve rounded up 20 excellent free and open source applications worth investigating and experimenting with in 2015.

Audacity

Audacity

Mac, Windows and Linux-compatible, this GPL-licensed program can do everything you’d expect from a commercial audio editor.

Edit samples and songs, process audio files, burn CDs and export a wide range of audio file formats including WAV, AIF or MP3. After Mozilla’s Firefox browser, Audacity might well be the best-known and most widely used open source music application.

LinuxSampler

LinuxSampler

Got a folder full of Akai, Giga or DLS samples? You can play them or make your own sample-based instruments in LinuxSampler.

Despite the name, it is available for OS X, Windows and – natch – Linux. It’s really just a sampler “engine”, and you decide which front-end to use. Options include Qsampler or Fantasia GUIs, among others. Well realised and mature.

Cecilia

Cecilia

Released under the GNU GPL for Mac, Windows and Linux, Cecelia is a CSound-based graphical environment for music and signal processing.

Additive, subtractive, granular synthesis and processing and more are presented in an easy-to-use GUI. Alas, the OS X version is no longer maintained, but it is still available for those of you with older operating systems.

Hydrogen

Hydrogen

Need a wickedly powerful drum machine? Available for Linux and OS X, Hydrogen is an advanced pattern-based drum sequencer and mixing environment.

With swing and humanisation functions onboard, along with the ability to layer both samples and patterns, you’d be hard pressed to find a better way to build beats for free.

Pure Data

Pure Data

A sweeping visual programming language for multimedia, Pure Data is an open source program released under a “Modified BSD” license, considered GPL-compatible by the Free Software Foundation.

If you always wanted to get into the Max or Kyma systems but lack the bread, this one’s for you. Mac, Windows, Linux and even Android and iOS are supported.

Mixxx

Mixxx

A Linux, Windows and OS X program that was among the first open-source products to be made available in Apple’s App Store, Mixxx provides a professional quality DJ mixing environment that can read MP3, Ogg Vorbis, WAV, AIFF and FLAC formats, among others.

Support for more than a dozen hardware controllers is written in, too, for hands-on mixing. Nice.

Rosegarden

Rosegarden

Another DAW initially developed for Linux and now in alpha for Windows, too, Rosegarden is a fully realised MIDI and audio workstation with all the trimmings.

It’s been around since 1993, if you can believe it, and it shows in the highly evolved, mature workflow. Released under the GPL license.

Qtractor

Qtractor

Yet another nifty DAW, this one’s strictly for Linux users.

Everything you need is here, including support for a wide variety of plugins (DSSI, LADSPA, Lv2 and VST in both native Linux and Wine-wrapped guises).

Fully integrated with Jack and Linux’s ALSA, Qtractor is easy to use and easy on the eyes. It’s frequently updated – with recent updates including standard DAW features such as freeze and MIDI instrument rendering – and is still simple and to the point. Qtractor is released under the GNU/GPL license.

samplv1

samplv1

Our second entry from Qtractor creator Rui Nuno Capela, samplv1 is a classic hardware-style soft sampler with multimode filtering, plenty of modulation options and a supremely easy-to-handle GUI.

It sounds the business and can be used standalone with Jack or as an Lv2 plugin. This one’s Linux-only.

SuperCollider

SuperCollider

Another one for OS X, Windows and Linux, this GNU GPL release has been in active development since 1996.

Designed as a programming language for real-time synthesis and algorithmic composition, SuperCollider is dense and deep. Books, seminars and workshops exist for those inclined to take the plunge.

SonicBirth

SonicBirth

SonicBirth is a massive modular construction environment that enables the user to patch together individual modules in order to create their own audio effects, synthesisers and more.

Better still, anything created in SonicBirth can be exported as either a VST or Audio Units plugin. It can get pretty deep, for sure, but it’s well worth the effort for those with a bit of time to commit.

This one is available for OS X and released under the GNU license.

Soundgrain

Soundgrain

From the man behind Cecilia and Zyne, Soundgrain taps into the weird and wonderful world of granular processing.

Released under GNU GPL for Windows, OS X and Linux, it’s a blast to use and easy to figure out. Now at version 5.0.0, there are few better ways to have fun with your audio files.

LMMS

LMMS

LMMS is a complete music production studio that began life as a Linux alternative to programs like FL Studio and Orion. Now available for OS X and Windows as well, it gives you everything you could need to produced polished electronic music on just about any computer.

There are 19 included instruments (including an embedded version of ZynAddSubFX) and scads of effects, plus VST support in the Windows and Linux versions. Import MIDI files, Hydrogen and FL Studio projects.

LMMS is fast, fun and totally free.

ZynAddSubFX

ZynAddSubFX

How many forms of synthesis can you pack into a single instrument? ZynAddSubFX combines subtractive analogue with a powerful additive engine and a wicked pad synthesizer for serious sound design fun.

Microtonal and multitimbral, and with a slew of built-in effects, there’s not a lot you can’t do with ZynAddSubFX. The sound is nothing short of spectacular. A Linux classic, it has also been ported to Windows, and there’s even a VST version.

TAL-NoiseMaker

TAL-NoiseMaker

Togu Audio Line has produced some of the best free and inexpensive virtual analogue plugins available, and TAL-NoiseMaker is a humdinger.

A revamp of the earlier TAL-Elek7ro, it’s a three-oscillator powerhouse with a self-oscillating filter section and some tasty built-in effects. The sound is thoroughly old-school, but there are some modern niceties hidden behind TAL-NoiseMaker’s collapsable windows, including custom envelope shaping.

Normally a purveyor of licensed products, TAL has released TAL-NoiseMaker under the GPL. Windows, OS X and even Linux versions can be found.

Giada

Giada

Sometimes less truly is more. Giada is a minimal production environment designed for DJs and live electronic musicians – but that doesn’t preclude it being enjoyed in the studio.

Giada combines a sequencer, piano roll and loop machine with the ability to host VST plugins. Live sampling is its strong suit, with built-in sample editing and slicing. Latency compensation is included.

It’s a neat little package and well worth the time it takes to download. Who knows – you might be inspired!

Hexter

Hexter

When Yamaha’s DX7 synthesizer hit the scene back in ’83, it changed everything – for a while, anyway. Its lush, clean FM-based sound was a welcome respite from the tired saw, square and pulse waves of analogue synths. As hard as it is to believe, many a Minimoog was swapped for a DX7!

Today’s desktop musician has more than a few choices when looking for an FM-based synthesizer, many of which are based directly on Yamaha’s classic DX series. Some will even open patches made on and for the hardware instruments that inspired them.

Sean Bolton’s Hexter can do exactly that, being compatible with the DX7’s SysEx files. Users wishing to create their own sounds can choose from two interfaces, Widgy and Retro.

If you already use a Linux, Hexter was likely included in your distro. If not, it can be downloaded from your repository or SourceForge.

Rackarrack

Rackarrack

Though Linux users have access to multiple plugin formats, they are not actually necessary, thanks to the JACK, a low-latency sound server daemon that allows interconnection of audio and MIDI from different programs. Rackarrack is just such a program.

Designed for guitarists, Rackarrack is a virtual pedalboard packed with nearly any effect you can think of and a few more besides. All the usual culprits are here (delay, phaser, reverb, chorus, EQ, gate and compressor), as well as more exotic effects like reverse echo, ring modulation and a looper. In fact, there are more than we have space to list.

Suffice it to say that if you play guitar and you use Linux, you simply must look into Rackarrack.

Ardour

Ardour

Now in its fourth incarnation, Ardour is an open-source alternative to the likes of Pro Tools, Cubase and Logic. A fully-fleshed out, mature DAW with all of the trimmings, Ardour began life as a Linux program before being ported to OS X and now, in version 4, Windows.

Ardour is freely available thtrough various Linux repositories or from the Ardour website. If you go to the source, you’ll have to pony up at least a buck to download the binaries, but the source code can be had for no charge.

Ubuntu Studio

Ubuntu Studio

Our list of open-source goodies features effects, synths, sequencers and even DAWs, but what would you say if we told you that you could download and install an entire operating system designed specifically for musicians? Indeed you can, and Linux users have been doing it for years.

There are in fact a few music-centric Linux operating systems (known as ‘distros’) available. One of the best is Ubuntu Studio, based around the popular Ubuntu OS. This distro quite literally has everything you need to create, record, mix and master your music. It comes pre-packaged with many of the programs on our list, including Ardour, Audacity, Rosegarden, and Hydrogen, Rackarrack, QTractor and Pure Data and many, many more.

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7 Awesome Open Source Cloud Storage Software For Your Privacy and Security

Cloud storage is nothing but an enterprise-level cloud data storage model to store the digital data in logical pools, across the multiple servers. You can use a hosting company such as Amazon, Google, Rackspace, Dropbox and others for keeping your data available and accessible 24×7. You can access data stored on cloud storage via API or desktop/mobile apps or web based systems.

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In this post, I’m going to list amazingly awesome open source cloud storage engines that you can use to access and sync your data privately for security and privacy reasons.

Why use open source cloud storage software?

The cloud - Source http://www.xkcd.net/908/

The cloud – Source http://www.xkcd.net/908/

  1. Create a cloud on your own server or in a data center.
  2. Control and own your own data.
  3. Privacy protection.
  4. Encryption.
  5. Verify source code for bugs and/or backdoors.
  6. Avoid spying on your files on the server using encryption.
  7. Legal compliance – HIPAA and others.
  8. Good performance as your data stored in local storage instead of remote data center.
  9. Good reliability and availability due to local LAN. You are no longer depends upon WAN bandwidth or the service provider for network.
  10. No artificially imposed limits on storage space or client connections and more
  11. Share your files and data with or without password or time limit. Share it publicly, or privately. No 3rd party corporation own your data.

Suggested sample cloud storage setup for home users

+—————-+ Internet/ISP—-|Router/Wireless | +—-+———–+ | +—-+—+ |Home Lan| +——–+ +——————-+ | | Raspberry Pi | +——-+ Or Intel | | Atom based server | | + | | Cloud storage | +——————-+

You can use the Raspberry Pi or an Intel Atom CPU based small server as a home cloud storage system. Use an external USB drive or secure backup service such as rsync.net/tarsnap.com to backup your cloud server in an encrypted format. This setup ensures that you keep all your data and not to trust the entirety of your personal data to a corporation.

Seafile: Easy to setup cloud storage for home users

Seafile is a file hosting cloud storage software to store files. You can synchronized files and data with PC and mobile devices easily or use the server’s web interface for managing your data files. There is no limits on data storage space (except for hard disk capacity) or the number of connected clients to your private server (except for CPU/RAM capacity).

Seafile cloud storage
Operating system: Cross-platform (written in C and Python) – MS-Windows/Raspberry Pi/Linux private server
Desktop clients: Yes (Windows/Mac OS X/Linux)
Mobile clients: Yes (Android/iPad/iPhone)
Type: File cloud storage and data synchronization
Paid support: Yes via Professional Edition
Licence: GPLv3 (Community Edition)
Download: seafile.com

ownCloud: Dropbox replacement

ownCloud is another very popular file hosting cloud storage software and often described as Dropbox replacement. Just like Dropbox you can synchronizes your files to your private server. Files placed in ownCloud server are accessible via the mobile and desktop apps. You can add external storage to your ownCloud with Dropbox, SWIFT, FTPs, Google Docs, S3, external WebDAV servers and more. Enable the encryption app to encrypt data on external storage for improved security and privacy.

owncloud  web client
Operating system: Cross-platform (written in PHP & JavaScript) – MS-Windows/Linux private server
Desktop clients: Yes (Windows/Mac OS X/Linux)
Mobile clients: Yes (Android/Apple iOS)
Type: File cloud storage and data synchronization
Paid support: Yes via Enterprise Edition
Licence: AGPLv3
Download: owncloud.org

git-annex assistant

The git-annex assistant creates a synchronised folder on each of your OSX and Linux computers, Android devices, removable drives, NAS appliances, and cloud services. You can manage, share, and sync your large files with the power of git and the ease of use of a simple folder you drop files into. Please note that the software is still under heavy development and new features are added regularly.

git-cloud-storage
Operating system: Cross-platform – MS-Windows(beta)/Linux/OS X/FreeBSD/Docker private server
Desktop clients: No (porting)
Mobile clients: Yes (Android)
Type: File cloud storage and data synchronization
Paid support: ???
Licence: GPL version 3
Download: git-annex.branchable.com

SparkleShare: Easy to use cloud storage with git as a storage backend

It is also a Dropbox clone and very easy to setup. From the project site:

SparkleShare creates a special folder on your computer. You can add remotely hosted folders (or “projects”) to this folder. These projects will be automatically kept in sync with both the host and all of your peers when someone adds, removes or edits a file.

sparkleshare
Operating system: Cross-platform (written in C#) – MS-Windows/Linux/OS X
Desktop clients: Yes ( MS-Windows/Linux/OS X)
Mobile clients: No (Android/iOS on hold)
Type: File and data synchronization
Paid support: ???
Licence: GPL version 3
Download: sparkleshare.org

Syncthing for private, encrypted & authenticated distribution of data

Syncthing is an open-source file synchronization client/server application, written in Go. It replaces proprietary sync and cloud services with something open, trustworthy and decentralized.

SyncthingWebInterface-1
Operating system: Cross-platform (written in Go) – Linux, Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, Android, BSD, Solaris
Desktop clients: Yes (MS-Windows/Linux/OS X/OpeBSD and Unix-like)
Mobile clients: Yes (Android/F-Driod)
Type: File and data synchronization
Paid support: ???
Licence: GPL version 3
Download: syncthing.net

Stacksync cloud storage

StackSync is an open-source scalable Personal Cloud that can adapt to the necessities of organizations. It puts a special emphasis on security by encrypting data on the client side before it is sent to the server.

stacksync
Operating system: Linux
Desktop clients: Yes (MS-Windows/Linux/)
Mobile clients: Yes (Android)
Type: File and data synchronization
Paid support: ???
Licence: GPL version 2
Download: stacksync.org

OpenStack Object Storage (Swift)

Swift is a scalable redundant storage system. Objects and files are written to multiple disk drives spread throughout servers in the data center, with the OpenStack software responsible for ensuring data replication and integrity across the cluster. Please note that Swift is meant for a large or enterprise users only and not recommended for home users due to complex setup procedures.

Operating system: Cross-platform (written in Python)
Desktop clients: ???
Mobile clients: ???
Type: File, data synchronization and more
Paid support: ???
Licence: Apache License 2.0
Download: openstack.org

Conclusion

Personally, I’m using Owncloud as FOSS based cloud solution for my file sharing with friends and family. It offers me Calendar, Contacts, and Dropbox like storage. My cloud server has total 5 disks, 2 Gib RAM, and an Intel atom cpu. I use a Debian Linux with RAID 6. I backup my cloud to an external USB drive and currently, testing tarsanp backup service. I’m also planning to try out SparkleShare on the Raspberry Pi soon.

Are you using any other personal FOSS cloud basesd software? Add your suggestions the comments below.

If you liked this page, pleasesupport my workonPatreonor with adonation.
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How to search on Google

Learn a few tips and tricks to help you easily find information on Google.

Tip 1: Start with the basics

No matter what you’re looking for, start with a simple search like where’s the closest airport?. You can always add a few descriptive words if necessary.

If you’re looking for a place or product in a specific location, add the location. For example, bakery seattle. 

Tip 2: Search using your voice

Tired of typing? To search with your voice, say “Ok Google” or select the Microphone . Learn more about how to search with your voice.

Tip 3: Choose words carefully

When you’re deciding what words to put in the search box, try to choose words that are likely to appear on the site you’re looking for. For example, instead of saying my head hurts, say headache, because that’s the word a medical site would use.

Tip 4: Don’t worry about the little things

  • Spelling. Google’s spell checker automatically uses the most common spelling of a given word, whether or not you spell it correctly. 
  • Capitalization. A search for New York Times is the same as a search for new york times.

Tip 5: Find quick answers

For many searches, Google will do the work for you and show an answer to your question in the search results. Some features, like information about sports teams, aren’t available in all regions. 

  • Weather: Search weather to see the weather in your location or add a city name, like weather seattle, to find weather for a certain place.
  • Dictionary: Put define in front of any word to see its definition. 
  • Calculations: Enter a math equation like 3*9123, or solve complex graphing equations.
  • Unit conversions: Enter any conversion, like 3 dollars in euros.
  • Sports: Search for the name of your team to see a schedule, game scores and more. 
  • Quick facts: Search for the name of a celebrity, location, movie, or song to find related information. 

Expert Search tips

Want more tips and tricks to help you search like a pro? Check out the links below to learn more advanced search techniques.

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Find Open Textbooks – BCcampus OpenEd Resources

  • Histories of Indigenous Peoples and Canada

    Author(s): John Douglas Belshaw, Thompson Rivers University, Sarah Nickel, University of Saskatchewan, Chelsea Horton, Vancouver Island University

    Updated: Nov 24, 2020

    Description: Since the 18th century, the historical study of “Indians,” “Natives,” and “Aboriginals” in universities and colleges was contextualized within the story of colonization and growing European influence. Whatever justification might be mustered for that practice, it had real and dire effects: Canadians — including many Indigenous people — came to understand Indigenous histories as tangential, small, unimportant, and even a blind alley. This kind of thinking enabled Canadian authorities and citizen…[more]

    Adopted

  • Northern and Indigenous Health and Healthcare

    Author(s): Heather Exner-Pirot, Bente Norbye, Lorna Butler; University of Saskatchewan

    Updated: Nov 24, 2020

    Description: The provision of northern health care entails many unique challenges and circumstances that are rarely represented in mainstream health sciences education. This open access, online resource consists of 38 short chapters from a variety of experts, academics, and practitioners in northern and Indigenous health and health care from around the Circumpolar North on the following themes: health issues in northern and Indigenous communities; health systems and governance; the social determinants of he…[more]

  • Autodesk Inventor eBook

    Author(s): Wally Baumback

    Updated: Nov 24, 2020

    Description: This eBook contains self-paced learning modules that were written as a tool to guide and teach students to master Inventor. No two students learn at the same pace, therefore, the modules were written as competency-based bite-size pieces to allow students to work at their own pace. This book can be used in correspondence courses, online courses, instructor-lead classes, or by individuals teaching themselves to use Inventor in their own home or office.

    Supplementary materials

  • Intermediate Algebra – 2e (OpenStax)

    Author(s): Lynn Marecek, Santa Ana College, Andrea Honeycutt Mathis, Northeast Mississippi Community College

    Updated: Nov 18, 2020

    Description: Intermediate Algebra – 2e is designed to meet the scope and sequence requirements of a one-semester intermediate algebra course. The book’s organization makes it easy to adapt to a variety of course syllabi. The text expands on the fundamental concepts of algebra while addressing the needs of students with diverse backgrounds and learning styles. The material is presented as a sequence of clear steps, building on concepts presented in prealgebra and elementary algebra courses. The second editio…[more]

    Adopted Accessible Supplementary materials

  • Line A – Safe Work Practices Competency A-1: Control Workplace Hazards

    Author(s): Camosun College

    Updated: Nov 17, 2020

    Description: Safety is a part of the job. When you take a job, you have a safety obligation to your employer, co-workers, family, and yourself. By recognizing and understanding the hazards in your work area, you can prevent the occurrence of many accidents. Most accidents are preventable. Both employees and employers must take responsibility for making the workplace safe. The following list of lines and competencies was generated with the goal of creating an entry-level trades training resource, while stil…[more]

    Adopted Accessible Supplementary materials

  • Introductory Statistics (OpenStax)

    Author(s): Barbara Illowsky, De Anza College, Susan Dean, De Anza College

    Updated: Nov 13, 2020

    Description: Introductory Statistics follows the scope and sequence of a one-semester, introduction to statistics course and is geared toward students majoring in fields other than math or engineering. This text assumes students have been exposed to intermediate algebra, and it focuses on the applications of statistical knowledge rather than the theory behind it. The foundation of this textbook is Collaborative Statistics, by Barbara Illowsky and Susan Dean, which has been widely adopted. Introductory Stati…[more]

    Reviewed Adopted Accessible Supplementary materials

  • In the Workplace: An Intermediate Integrated Skills Textbook

    Author(s): Bow Valley College

    Updated: Nov 13, 2020

    Description: This is an English language skills textbook to help ELL students acquire communication skills in the workplace (listening, speaking, reading, and writing). The book is aimed at Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) levels 5/6, focusing on intercultural skills and essential skills: reading text, document use, writing, oral communication, thinking skills, working with others, and computer use. The digital PDF file can be printed or used from a computer. All of the multimedia files can be accessed fro…[more]

    Supplementary materials

  • In the Community: An Intermediate Integrated Skills Textbook

    Author(s): NorQuest College

    Updated: Nov 13, 2020

    Description: This is an English language skills textbook to help ELL students acquire communication skills in the community (listening, speaking, reading, and writing). The book is aimed at Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) levels 5/6, focusing on intercultural skills and essential skills: reading text, document use, writing, oral communication, thinking skills, working with others, and computer use. The digital PDF file can be printed or used from a computer. All of the multimedia files can be accessed fro…[more]

    Reviewed Supplementary materials

  • Concepts of Biology (OpenStax)

    Author(s): Samantha Fowler, Rebecca Roush, James Wise

    Updated: Nov 13, 2020

    Description: Concepts of Biology is designed for the typical introductory biology course for nonmajors, covering standard scope and sequence requirements. The text includes interesting applications and conveys the major themes of biology, with content that is meaningful and easy to understand. The book is designed to demonstrate biology concepts and to promote scientific literacy.

    Reviewed Adopted Accessible Supplementary materials

  • College Algebra (OpenStax)

    Author(s): Jay Abramson, Arizona State University

    Updated: Nov 13, 2020

    Description: College Algebra provides a comprehensive exploration of algebraic principles and meets scope and sequence requirements for a typical introductory algebra course. The modular approach and richness of content ensure that the book meets the needs of a variety of courses. College Algebra offers a wealth of examples with detailed, conceptual explanations, building a strong foundation in the material before asking students to apply what they’ve learned.

    Reviewed Adopted Accessible Supplementary materials

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