Free Technical Software, Part Two

from Educators' eZine

Free Technical Software, Part Two will follow the same format as Part One to describe some fantastic “give away items”. Please note that if I write about and suggest something as a download, I have tried it out myself. Also note that I’m not an expert with their use and I have no affiliation to those that make it available on their Web sites. If there ever is an exception to that, I will mention it when it occurs. It is just my hope that when I spend the time to find things for you, you can use them in your daily work. Many of you cannot spend the time on your school’s computers to surf the Web, so I do it for you, hopefully saving you many hours.

Howie’s Funware

Here, for your toolbox, is a very simple-to-use screen capture program. Nothing difficult here, but do make all your preference choices before time, under the File menu at top left, so the little program knows where and how you want to store your screen captures.


Another screen capture tool, but with more sophistication. It does require a small license fee if you want it around on your desktop. This could be used more for professional documents you want to compose, although all the others do basically the same things.

Chemistry Assistant

Although I am not sure how to use it, the site says it “is an expression calculator for fast calculation of molecular weight of compounds by simple entry of chemical formula. The program translates the texts with chemical element symbols or without them into a mathematical expression and calculates them. The program includes functions for statistical analysis, solving the quadratic equation, and prepare solution calculator.

Periodic Table of the Elements

Found at the same web site as the calculator above. Use your cursor to drag the mercury higher and lower to see what state the elements are in at different temperatures. Really cool stuff. I wish they had these aids when I went to school, I might have even taken Chemistry because of it. In those days there were only 48 states and 96 elements. I understand there are more now. It’s free to all so get it for yourself or a student.


Now for you electronic guys, here is a PCBoard Layout screen with knowledge base built in and all the tools you need for a completed board. Then all you do is tell the provider of the program how many to make for you. That’s simple, huh? How about this for you hobbyists out there? This is some pretty good stuff if you know how to use it.

BONUS: Hey, while you are there at this web site, go get the Schematic Drawing Board too.
You cannot beat these prices. If there is something better than free, please let me know.

FelixCAD LT Second Edition

Check this web site out. It’s really decent CAD software, and you cannot beat the price – free. This one is really impressive with all it can do for you.

Masterra Advanced Converter

Now, here is an advanced-converter that you can have around on your desktop. What is different here is that the software tells you what country standard is in use. Nice to have handy access to, as we truly move towards a world economy. Try out the other things too.


This site has some graphing software and other tools for your toolbox. It’s handy to have if you are doing a presentation where you need to show a graph. Download free for 30 days.

Pinion AutoShred

With this utility program you can send your files to others (they must have the free “Pinion Receiver” program) for limited amounts of time and then the file self destructs. Send your PDF’s or .doc files, for minutes, hours, days or months and know that they will die off, at a predetermined time (which you pick before sending). At the time of this writing the company was waiving the normal $29.95 purchase price.

Finally, with everything that I have found out there, there are times when it is just better to list the web sites for you to go look at yourself. The following trusted sites are highly recommended to you for most reference searches you might want to do.

Finally, I also want to dedicate this article to my late friend Joe Greco.

Email:Richard Williams