The Museum of HP Calculators

HP Forum Archive 13

 MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #1 Posted by Bill (Smithville, NJ) on 11 Nov 2003, 3:07 p.m. Just ran across the following MIT Department of Chemistry web site: "Examples of Acceptable Calculators for 5.111 and 5.112 Fall 2003": http://web.mit.edu/5.111/www/Fall03/calculator.html Forturantely for the students - the HP-42S is listed as acceptable but not the HP-32SII. I always wonder how they make the determination that Calculator XX is acceptable but Calculator YY is not.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #2 Posted by Dave on 12 Nov 2003, 10:56 a.m.,in response to message #1 by Bill (Smithville, NJ) I never have understood the fascination here and elsewhere for the 32SII calculator. It seems so limited in capabilities Edited: 12 Nov 2003, 3:37 p.m. after one or more responses were posted

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #3 Posted by Valentin Albillo on 12 Nov 2003, 11:00 a.m.,in response to message #2 by Dave Dave posted: " I seems so limited in capabilities" I beg your pardon, but do you actually mean: "I seem so limited in capabilities" or else "It seems so limited in capabilities" ? :-) Now seriously, the 32SII is a wonderful calculator in many aspects, its only killer drawback being it has an utterly preposterous, ultra-small amount of user's RAM, just 384 bytes ! :-( :-( :-( As every line in a program takes a minimum of 1.5 bytes, this means only a theoretical maximum of 256 lines is feasible. But many other features and functions take a lot more. Real numbers other than small integers take 9.5 bytes per number (1234 for instance would require that amount instead of the typical 4 bytes in most other calculators). "Integrate" requires 140 bytes, plus the bytes taken by your function or equation, plus any necessary setup. Thus, we sadly find that many other earlier calculators can run rings around the 32SII in terms of feasible programming tasks, such as the HP-15C from HP and most any SHARP programmable handhelds, even the humblest. This unfortunate situation wasn't new: the HP28S was also released with a breathtaking array of advanced, even revolutionary, capabilites, yet only 2 Kb RAM which for that machine amounted to next to nothing. Best regards from V. Edited: 12 Nov 2003, 12:27 p.m.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #4 Posted by Massimo Gnerucci (Italy) on 12 Nov 2003, 12:47 p.m.,in response to message #3 by Valentin Albillo Sorry Valentin: Quote:the HP28S was also released with a breathtaking array of advanced, even revolutionary, capabilites, yet only 2 Kb RAM That was the 28C, HP28S first incarnation... ehm... plastification(?) ;-) Massimo

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #5 Posted by Valentin Albillo on 12 Nov 2003, 12:55 p.m.,in response to message #4 by Massimo Gnerucci (Italy) Massimo posted: "That was the 28C, HP28S first incarnation... ehm... plastification(?) ;-)" Certainly, certainly, a typo on my part. The most obfuscated word I can think of instead of "incarnation" or "plastification" would be "transmogrification" :-) I saw an HP-28C as soon as it was released and, frankly, was absolutely unimpressed. With that little RAM, new (at the time) RPL language ("transmogrified RPN") and primitive symbolic capabilities it seemed to me more of a 'toy' than a professional instrument as the 41 was. I didn't buy one at the time and still have none though I later acquired an HP28S. Best regards from V.

 Off-topic: vocabulary errorMessage #6 Posted by W. B. Maguire II on 12 Nov 2003, 7:57 p.m.,in response to message #5 by Valentin Albillo Valentin wrote: Quote: Massimo posted: "That was the 28C, HP28S first incarnation... ehm... plastification(?) ;-)" Certainly, certainly, a typo on my part. The most obfuscated word I can think of instead of "incarnation" or "plastification" would be "transmogrification" :-) "Plastification" is not a word. I believe that you both meant "plasticization". Bruce.

 Re: Off-topic: vocabulary errorMessage #7 Posted by Ed Look on 12 Nov 2003, 10:51 p.m.,in response to message #6 by W. B. Maguire II Forgive me and allow me to weigh in here. While it is true that even an up to date (American) English dictionary may not have [imaginary] "plastification", I think the intended meaning is different from the [real] "plasticization": the latter refers to a(n increase) change in elastic, mechanical properties of a material whereas I believe Massimo may mean a (degradation) change in quality. Even back in the sixth grade (and for me, that's a while) a classmate and I, after looking at some new products in the five-n-dime, lamented, "As man invents, everything gets more plastic!" We both understood that he didn't mean polymers or resins; he meant the loss of quality, as to a child, the relative (to metals, etc.) inability to withstand manhandling of items manufactured in some plastics led to his observation! Upshot: if it ain't a word, it oughtta be. ;)

 Memory limitations at model introductionMessage #8 Posted by Andrés C. Rodríguez (Argentina) on 12 Nov 2003, 1:21 p.m.,in response to message #3 by Valentin Albillo 32 S II: memory is a severe limitation and the model (sadly) was never upgraded (even the 33 S, having more physical RAM, seems not to be able to take advantage of it) 28 C: Upgraded as "new" model, 28 S. 2 KBy was too little memory. 48 G: Upgraded as 48 G+ (While I don't like RPL machines, I concede that a 48 G is rather useable with "only" 32 KBy) 41 C: Upgraded as "new" model, 41 CV, but the original was of course expandable with Memory Modules, Quad RAM, etc... In my opinion, the original 41 C, with only 64 registers (448 bytes... not far from the 32 S II capacity) was useable but somehow limited until you added extra RAM. Granted: Less than half a kilobyte was more reasonable in 1980 (41C) than in 2000 (32 S II), and the 41C is more efficient in RAM usage. It seems that the case for "undersized memory" happened many times in the past. Just my \$ 0.02

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #9 Posted by bill platt on 12 Nov 2003, 11:12 a.m.,in response to message #2 by Dave It is the *only * RPN scientific machine produced since the early 90's, and it has all the features (as well as some new ones) as the 11c (and the 34c generally, as well) and enough memory to do many useful programs. And, most functions are only one or two keypresses away. What's not to like? It used to be \$59.95 and small and compact. No, it's no 15-c, but it is close enough for most hand calculation tasks! In short, it was the only RPN machine on the market for the last decade! Regards, Bill

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #10 Posted by Dave on 12 Nov 2003, 3:42 p.m.,in response to message #9 by bill platt Yeah, just because it was the only one does not make it good. I think some of this boards fascination with the 32SII led to the 33S design choices... It went to the old 67 style cluttered keypad Perception that memory access or amount is unimportant Oh well, I hope HP has future design plans around superior calculator designs....... Edited: 12 Nov 2003, 3:43 p.m.

 32siiMessage #11 Posted by bill platt on 12 Nov 2003, 4:06 p.m.,in response to message #10 by Dave Hi Dave, I agree that being the only one does not make it good. However, from my own experience, it seemed quite good at the time: 1981: bought 11c for \$130 great machine. a marvel. 1995: lost 11c so bought the 32sii. Cost: \$60. same amount of program lines. 33 registers instead of 21. All 12 comparisons rather than 8. Alphanumeric prompting. Storage registers alphabetic. Equations, solve (both in equ and rpn) integrate (both in eqn and rpn). Dynamic memory allocation. Vastly improved memory and program management. Downside: keyboard layout not as perfect as the 11c. Felt less expensive (but was!). Could have been much more, at the same price, considering the technology at the time. But when designed (late 80's) may have been unattainable. So, for an 11c user, the 32sii was a definite upgrade. But as I have read Valentin's posts, (and earlier when a German co-worker showed me a Sharp) I now realize that I could have got much more for my money at the time (95) buying a sharp.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #12 Posted by W. B. Maguire II on 12 Nov 2003, 8:07 p.m.,in response to message #10 by Dave Dave (which Dave?) wrote: Quote: ...I think some of this boards [sic] fascination with the 32SII led to the 33S design choices... Do you really think that the opinions of a literal handful of people on this site influenced HP-33s design choices? That would speak wonders about the influence and power of MoHPC Forum participants. Although I doubt it, I wish it were so! Maybe we could counteract the inane influences of the marketing department! `;-)` Bruce.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #13 Posted by jonstot on 16 Nov 2003, 2:34 p.m.,in response to message #12 by W. B. Maguire II My own 'fascination' with the 32SII has very little to do with its programming capability. In fact, I don't believe I've written a program for any of my HP calculators since the first Mac was released ('84, I believe). But I love my 32SII and use it practically every working day. Why the fascination? Simple: ergonomics, esthetics, and RPN. It's small(ish), lightweight, fits in my shirt pocket, it has the old HP-quality feel to the keypad, the color scheme is perfect, it has all the functions I need, and it's RPN (God rest its unappreciated soul). Alas, my 32SII is on its last legs and I'm beginning to panic, what with nothing comparable available now. 33S? You gotta be kidding! And the new graphing calculators leave me unimpressed - too big, too ugly, too complicated for what I need. Now I'm trying to muster the courage to buy a "new in the box" 32SII that will cost as much as an entry-level desktop computer.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #14 Posted by Ed Look on 16 Nov 2003, 6:55 p.m.,in response to message #13 by jonstot Now, I love my 32SII and use it as my main machine (I don't take it anywhere, though, especially given the outrageous prices people ask for it) because it is so much like the 34C. But I think that either the 48G series or 49G series calcs could do, though terribly complicated and more than you might want or need, as they are still RPN with (now an infinite) stack. You don't have registers anymore, but is that too different from storing in a variable? If you do program and use indirect addressing, it could be a pain, but since you don't, it may be more economical than paying a ransom for a 32SII, cute as it is.

 A possible solution Hp17BiiMessage #15 Posted by Ron Ross on 17 Nov 2003, 8:32 a.m.,in response to message #13 by jonstot This calculator can be set to RPN, has better stats, More RAM (7 K), and a great Solver. And it has the same keyboard and basic layout as your present Hp32s. Downside. No Trig, but can be implemented via solver, but not as good as the 32s for a scientific. And they are still relatively cheap and well made (I doubt if the newest Hp17Bii+ is much better than the Hp10Bii, but I hope for Hp's sake that it is). If the newer Hp17Bii+ is a good quality calculator, it is now on the market to replace (and therefore deflate the value) the Hp17Bii.

 Re: MIT Chemistry Course Accepts HP-42s But not HP-32SIIMessage #16 Posted by Karl Schneider on 13 Nov 2003, 1:53 a.m.,in response to message #1 by Bill (Smithville, NJ) Bill from Smithville posted: Quote: I always wonder how they make the determination that Calculator XX is acceptable but Calculator YY is not. My guess is that, in the case of the 32Sii vs. 42S, the "examining board" saw the 26 letters of the alphabet printed on the keyboard face of the former, but not on the latter.

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