We present the free and open-source software Takin , which aims to ease many of the tasks encountered during the planning phase and in the conduction of experiments performed at neutron triple-axis spectrometers. The software features an easy-to-use graphical user interface for live visualizations of reciprocal space, the corresponding instrument configuration, and the resolution function. Furthermore, resolution convolution simulations can be performed on-the-fly to assess the best scattering positions.
The software is currently in regular use at the MLZ in Garching, Germany, and -- due to the program’s modular nature -- can be easily extended to work with many other instruments, network instrument control systems and data formats. Takin includes an implementation of the novel Eckold-Sobolev  approach to the triple-axis resolution function. This new method gives more accurate results for instrument configurations using monochromator or analyser focusing than the standard Popovici  method.
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 G. Eckold and O. Sobolev, Nucl. Instr. Meth. Phys. Res. A 752, pp. 54-64 (2014).
 M. Popovici, Acta Crystallogr. Sect. A, 31, pp. 507-513 (1975).