Mathcad is desktop software for performing and documenting engineering and scientific calculations. First introduced in 1986 on MS-DOS, it was the first to introduce live editing of typeset mathematical notation, combined with its automatic computation. It was also the first to automatically compute and check consistency of engineering units such as the International System of Units (SI). Mathcad today includes some of the capabilities of a computer algebra system but remains oriented towards ease of use and numerical engineering applications. Mathcad was conceived and originally written by Allen Razdow (of MIT), co-founder of Mathsoft which is now part of Parametric Technology Corporation.
Mathcad paved the way for a variety of desktop mathematical tools. It is oriented around a worksheet, in which equations and expressions are displayed graphically (WYSIWYG), as opposed to plain text, an approach later adopted by other systems such as Mathematica.
Among the capabilities of Mathcad are:
Although this program is mostly oriented to non-programming users, it is also used in more complex projects to visualize results of mathematical modeling using distributed computing and traditional programming languages. It is often used in large engineering projects where traceability and standards compliance are of importance.[