|I wish I could... |
Message #14 Posted by Vieira, Luiz C. (Brazil) on 28 Mar 2005, 2:15 a.m.,
in response to message #13 by GWB
... do something even if I am the President; anyway, thanks for your vote, Gerson...8-). Well, at least I am an Electrical Engineer already.
Back to the issue: may I play a Devil's Advocate? I read a lot of posts about poducts (calculators) being brought back to production, and some of them called my (enginer) attention because of a particular issue: profit. Some guys called my (our) attention to the fact that if the HP12C has not been sold in quantities that justify having them in production AND if, even so, it is not profitable, it was no longer under production. Dom Shepherd's post emphasizes these facts again, and he also calls us a very tiny minority; for me, he is not far from the truth. You see, today's needs demand professionals able to operate tools that did not exist, say, thirty years ago. And todays professionals must improve their skills to go ahead and be prepared for what's to come. One thing I tell my students everytime I can: 'If you have a good idea and you want it to become a product or any sort of goodies to interact with people, do not waste more than three months developing it, because if the idea does not become an actual product in less than six months, all of the environment you created it for may no longer exist and your product will no longer be needed.' I am almost sure that others in here that worked on R&D a few decades ago remember that a product should leave production line without any potential flaw. Today we got used to read about 'recall', 'replacement', 'countless patches', meaning that neither the producer has an idea about how good or bad the products are. Why? R&D can no longer spend time in testing, adjustments, corrections and the like because whatever needs to be corrected will actualy make a difference when someone finds it out. Otherwise, correcting everything prior to put a product for sale is money loss. So, engineers should not waste their time and company's resources by computing and computing and recomputing to reduce production line losses and enhance product quality, just let financial staff to compute and recompute how much money we gain when reducing product quality to an acceptable level and how much money we lose (investment in R&D, production delay,...) if quality is enhanced and all products need more than the necessary time to leave production line. In a financial view, it is a loss.
To improve design and testing, powerfull workstations run all sort of CAx (CAD, CAM, HDL environment, etc.) and close-to-real simulations, so a good idea goes straight from the workstation to produciton line in a flash, and final products are packed and sold in a couple of months after being conceived.
A few decades ago we could afford using our personal, powerfull (HP) calculators and take months to refine a product based on many simulations that ran in RPN-based programs. Many HP calculators themselves needed some time from their conception till the day they were 'made public' and finaly sold.
Yeap, I know, this is 'cold water', but we must face current facts and have a solid proposal. I guess the best personal computing device is about to come, and either the Xpander or the newer Qonos are the HP's demonstration that it (HP) wants to set standards again.
I believe it can be done. I'm not quite sure if it will be.
Quote:I'd go further: a "blank" Voyager with upgradable OS. Whatever you need, simply set your prefered pack of functions and download it from a PC. I think this so called 'Voyager' should have a two-line grahics display (like the HP42S) or a four-line (like the HP28S) and offer the standard arithmetic plus financial functions in some 'hot keys', while others close to the display would work as softkeys, with shift functionality. That would be a great platform for doing everything, even to "teach assembly language".
I’ve always thought the 12c would be a good platform to teach assembly language programming at the community college, but that would be a very unmarketable skill these days.
I wrote too much, again.
Edited: 28 Mar 2005, 2:47 a.m.