Can anybody simplify trig?



READ BEFORE YOU FLAG: I did search this over and over again, but none of the explainations make any sense... is is all I got: hypotenuse is the long side of a right triangle, always used in calculating the angle, adjacent is the other side in that angle, and opposite is the side not involved in that angle, but where does sine, cosine, and tangent come into play? and how do you calculate this, and is there any way to simplify this? I'm trying to make a point towards, and I could copy the code I saw, but I have no idea what any of it means.

How do I use Sin and Cos?

@justanerd, I am sure that you are resourceful enough to find the answers to your questions on, for example, Wikipedia or on a website dedicated to mathematics. I am also sure that there are many Hopscotch coders who could do a fine job of answering your questions completely. I have seen the topic handled well enough on the forum. Still, I would enjoy helping you to get the answers that you want. Would you like that?


yes, imagine you're speaking to a person who is just now entering pre-K, then I might understand it, in my understanding the people explaining expect you've taken geometry, or algebra 3, or calculus, me is in 8th grade, me no know dat stuffs, I ask that you speak English wherever possible


I understand. I will do the best that I can.

You have asked about the trigonometric functions, sine, cosine and tangent. These "functions" can be described in many ways, but the most intuitive is, yes, to use a right triangle as the model.

In short, these "functions" normally take as their "argument" an angle. That angle is formed where what we can informally call the "bottom" or "horizontal" side of a right triangle meets the long, slanted "hypotenuse". The remaining side can informally be visualized as a vertical line segment. Together, the horizontal, vertical and slanted sides form a right triangle. Please tell me, if that did not make sense.

The "tangent" of that angle is, then, the ratio of the length of the "vertical" side to that of the "horizontal" side.

The "cosine" of the angle is the ratio of the length of the "horizontal" side to that of the "slanted" hypotenuse.

The "sine" of the angle is the ratio of the length of the "vertical" side to that of the "slanted" hypotenuse.


Well my version of an explanation...(we just learned this a few weeks ago actually)

Ok, so you're right. Of a right triangle, the hypotenuse is the long one. The opposite (let's say of angle a) is directly across. The adjacent is the other one next to it, other than the hypotenuse.

Sine, cosine, and tangent help to find the measure of that angle (and side if you're working backwards).

Sine is the opposite over the hypotenuse (opposite/hypotenuse, or O/H).

Cosine is adjacent over hypotenuse (adjacent/hypotenuse or A/H).

Tangent is opposite over adjacent (opposite/hypotenuse or O/A).

Depending on what values you have, you use one of those (ex. if you have opposite and adjacent you use tangent) to find the angle.

You multiply the value (ex. opp./adj.) by your sine, cosine, or tangent on your calulator.

You may ask, "But why does this relate to Hopscotch?" Well, I'm not great at sin/cos art, but in this we use CIRCLES! This is because a right triangle is used to model a circle, but we don't really care about that.

I'd add pictures, but I'm on my phone so I can't. Sorry.

@oio probably explained that better, but whatever. I was bored anyway.

(PS oio, did I get all of that right? I just did this off the top of my head so...)

PPS Dang this ended long. Sorry!


I is slightly less cunfuzzled, but, here's what I got out of that:
le sine, cosine and tangent are not the angles, but the ratio of this side to that side (what I got out of other explainations was that they were the angles of the triangle, which didn't make sense as they all said that it used a right triangle, so 1 of them would always be 90 degrees, and could just be put as 90, instead of a variable) but... the tangent of the angle... of what angle are we talking about?



My terrible little drawing :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


The angle that we are talking about, in @CreativeCoder 's drawing is the angle "a".


each time this is explained it gets slightly less confusing, but that comes with the person explaining making this one specific part English, and the rest Klingon (just random nerdspeak for no hablo this bit) when I only speak English


Haha, sorry. What don't you get? Or, rather, what DO you get so far?


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Hopefully, once we have made it past the definitions, we can get to the fun part, which is the answer to the question, "So, what?" That's where we talk about how we actually make these functions useful to us. :sunglasses:


You might enjoy this, to just get you through the definitions:


I'm curious about that too. It's something about right triangles relating to measuring circles I think, but...


angles, lines and functions, give me an equation to solve for me to see how this works, 'cause this is this, this/this is this, and this is whop wom woob wawawawa waaaaa
what part is which!?! this decided by this is this, tangent is this decided by this, but this is (definition including tangent), this is what I'm hearing:

water is a liquid
liquids are like water

you are explaining this to somebody who knows neither what a liquid or water is


yes, the definitions are the hard bit


(nvm, I found that one on a proxy I've been using, same title, same picture, I think it's the right one, but I'm typing this before I watch it)I'll watch this when I get on my pc, my school iPad has YouTube blocked


Yeah, guys, once we get through all of the definitions gobbledygook, the fun part is where you find out how knowing this stuff gives you special math powers in the world. My area of study, which is physics, uses these functions and lots and lots more of them to do exactly that. I would love to tell you how, but only if you're interested. :sunglasses:


Oh. Okay, I can work with that.

Let's break it down. Let's start with 'sine'.

Sine. You probably see it as SIN. It is one of the things to use to find angle measures.

Remember SOH. It means the sine is opposite divided by the hypotenuse. That (O/H) is multiplied by the SIN function on a calculator. Sin^-1 comes in..but that's more algebraic so forget that for now.

Sine, cosine, and tangent are practically the same, but are used with different values.

(PS this is kinda awkward because I'm a 7th grader...)


meh, one of my best friends was moved up to high school for an hour a day to get better education in math in 6th grade, when he went to a middle school with me that taught up to geometry, I'm used to people younger than me out smarting me