Kirk McDonald

is creating a Factorio calculator




per month


What's this?

My name is Kirk McDonald, and I've written a ratio calculator for the game Factorio. At the suggestion of some of my users, I've created this Patreon page.

What's Factorio?

Factorio is a video game by Wube Software about building a factory, and you should buy and play it.

What's a ratio calculator, and why would I want one?

A ratio calculator is a tool that assists in designing a factory, by telling you about the prerequisites for whatever you want to make.

While it is possible to play Factorio completely on the fly, by adding more parts to your factory whenever you observe that something is running short, I have found that it's much faster and more efficient to calculate how large your factory will need to be, before you even start building it.

What's so special about your calculator?

Mine is far from the only ratio calculator out there. Most of the problem of calculating ratios is fairly trivial to implement, and so you can find any number of implementations which can provide useful numbers for the first 90% or so of the problem.

However, the problem becomes considerably more complicated as you start paying attention to the small details, and there are very few Factorio calculators which bother to pursue the problem after the point where solving it starts to become difficult.

Some of the notable features of my calculator include:

  • Oil processing calculations. Factorio's oil processing recipes are the first point where most calculators start to have problems producing a solution. My calculator does the hard work necessary to calculate optimal and numerically precise results for these recipes.
  • Modules and beacons. These items allow you to modify the costs of recipes, and can have an enormous impact on the designs of late-game factories.
  • Unlimited numerical precision. My calculator performs its calculations using bignum rationals, avoiding any of the loss of precision that using ordinary floating-point values might cause.
  • And more!
Anything else I should know?

It's been quite gratifying to see the response to this little side-project of mine. I started writing it merely for my own benefit, and I've been quite pleased to see that other people find it useful, as well.

Thanks for using my Factorio calculator!
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