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HHC 2018 Programming Contests
09-13-2018, 02:17 PM
Post: #1
HHC 2018 Programming Contests
FYI: The Programming Contest at HHC 2018 will be announced simultaneously on the morning of Saturday 29 September 2018 at the conference, and here, and on the official HHC mailing list.

Unlike usual, the winning programs will be the Most Elegant, not necessarily the fastest and/or smallest. "Most Elegant" is subjective, and will be decided by the Contest Judge at the conference early Sunday afternoon.

If you are planning on attending, you may wish to bring an HP-41CX, since there will be three categories, each with a Most Elegant winner: HP-41CX RPN, RPL (any model), and HP PPL (Prime). If your 41CX-type RPN program is submitted on something other than a 41CX, your program must be code compatible with the 41CX to win, so don't be tempted to use your Swiss model's bigger screen to impress the judge. ;-)

Details to follow...

X<> c
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09-13-2018, 06:29 PM
Post: #2
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
Great and I will pack the contests directly in the hp calc torrent (that started exactly with those little files. Quality builds over time).

Wikis are great, Contribute :)
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09-13-2018, 10:05 PM
Post: #3
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
.
Hi, Joe:

(09-13-2018 02:17 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  [...]there will be three categories, each with a Most Elegant winner: HP-41CX RPN, RPL (any model), and HP PPL (Prime).

Not that I intend to attend HHC 2018 or enter any of its Programming Contests, but I would really appreciate it if you or someone else sufficiently qualified could give me some rationale or explanation on why RPN, RPL and HP PPL are admitted languages but the very capable and advanced HP-71B BASIC language is not (let alone HP-71B FORTH).

Why is that ? Is the HP-71B not considered a genuine classic calculator of HP's golden age ? Aren't there any HP fans out there using and programming the HP-71B anymore ? No love for the poor beastie ?

Why the blatant discrimination ? I wouldn't mind it if it were admitted and yet no one would submit an entry coded in its language, but the mere fact that it's not even considered admissible seems to reek of arbitrary, unfair discrimination or worse, sheer contempt.

Regards.
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09-13-2018, 10:10 PM
Post: #4
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-13-2018 10:05 PM)Valentin Albillo Wrote:  Why is that ? Is the HP-71B not considered a genuine classic calculator of HP's golden age ? Aren't there any HP fans out there using and programming the HP-71B anymore ? No love for the poor beastie ?

Why the blatant discrimination ? I wouldn't mind it if it were admitted and yet no one would submit an entry coded in its language, but the mere fact that it's not even considered admissible seems to reek of arbitrary, unfair discrimination or worse, sheer contempt.

I don’t know the exact production numbers in relation to the others, and it’s just my observation:but maybe it is because there weren’t many of them made ?

I wish I had a 71B
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09-13-2018, 10:56 PM
Post: #5
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
I'll take a whack at this.

The idea of the contest is basically something to be tried among the attendees of the conference. Ideally, this will allow a rather large percentage of the people at the conferences to try a solution.

Historically and I've been to (more or less) the last 14 conferences, the most popular, most available, most commonly usable machine-style is without a doubt...

The HP 41 style command set. The HP 41 series and perhaps the HP 42S series dominate what the attendees regularly know how to program so it gives many people a chance to reason through the problem trying to get a solution.

Second place goes to the RPL series of machines, but this is always a rather distant second. If I get 10 entries for the RPN / HP 41 style contest, we will get 3 or 4 in RPL.

The new kid on the block is the PRIME. We shall see how many try it.

The HP 71B is an amazing machine, but out of 40 people at the conference, not very many are going to try programming it as a contest machine, IMO. Does not mean it can't be done, but we try to judge ceteris paribus.

The goal is to see who comes up with a unique, fast, innovative solution using a common feature set. If speed is an issue, then you can't have the WP-34S in the mix vs. a vanilla HP-41C.

Gene

P.S. We tried a contest on the 34S one year and had less than half the entires of HP-41 style RPN.

So Valentin... NO offense meant... :-)

Here in the forum, PLEASE take a try at all of the contests. . . using the HP 71B or any other machine.
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09-13-2018, 11:34 PM (This post was last modified: 09-14-2018 01:27 AM by rprosperi.)
Post: #6
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-13-2018 10:56 PM)Gene Wrote:  Here in the forum, PLEASE take a try at all of the contests. . . using the HP 71B or any other machine.

Indeed, since the contest is being judged on elegance (vs. Speed or Size), go ahead and submit a 71B solution; it can't help but be more elegant than any 41C solution (I guess my 71B bias is showing here...)

Alternate approach: Do you have a 41 Translator ROM for the 71B? Seems that meets the criteria as stated.

--Bob Prosperi
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09-14-2018, 12:06 AM
Post: #7
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
And I am not involved in the programming contest at ALL this year, so what I think or don't think matters not at all. :-)
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09-14-2018, 04:42 AM
Post: #8
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-13-2018 10:05 PM)Valentin Albillo Wrote:  Is the HP-71B not considered a genuine classic calculator of HP's golden age ? Aren't there any HP fans out there using and programming the HP-71B anymore ? No love for the poor beastie ?

Why the blatant discrimination ? I wouldn't mind it if it were admitted and yet no one would submit an entry coded in its language, but the mere fact that it's not even considered admissible seems to reek of arbitrary, unfair discrimination or worse, sheer contempt.

I hope you don't mind that I find this very funny, since I only wrote one book in my whole life, and it was about the HP-71 which I *still* love dearly. The very notion of ME ("The HP-71 Answer Man" back in the day) holding the HP-71 in contempt is hilarious. But the primary purpose of the contest is FUN, and it would NOT be fun (but instead quite exasperating) if I had to judge more than a few different models in the VERY short amount of time allocated for judging. So I'm only including the top three HP models that attendees are most likely to bring with them. THREE is already pushing it. Most years we've only had one or two models.

However, as others here have said, please post your HP-71 program, and if it's elegant enough, you might even win an Honorable Mention which will live forever in the MoHPC Digital Archive. Smile

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09-14-2018, 05:28 AM
Post: #9
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
Hello Joe,

This is a great idea,

I have always though of myself as a writer as much as a programmer and I do beleive that programming is an artform.

Art both in the "art of finding a solution", which is the obvious thing, but also "art in the form" in which the solution is presented...

Although I will not be there at HHC, I will try to provide an input!

Cyrille

Although I work for the HP calculator group, the views and opinions I post here are my own. I do not speak for HP.
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09-14-2018, 06:18 PM
Post: #10
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-14-2018 05:28 AM)cyrille de brébisson Wrote:  Although I will not be there at HHC, I will try to provide an input!

Awesome! Will you be able to visit with us via Skype again this year? That would be cool!

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09-14-2018, 10:28 PM
Post: #11
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
.
Hi, everyone:

(09-13-2018 10:10 PM)Zaphod Wrote:  I don’t know the exact production numbers in relation to the others, and it’s just my observation:but maybe it is because there weren’t many of them made ?
I wish I had a 71B

I also don't know the exact production numbers but I do know that several large companies both private and public did buy very large batches of HP-71B's, which later were dumped to be sold as secondhand and so the market became actually flooded with them and they were sold at utterly ridiculous prices (say 5 €/$) or even presented as a gift at HP-fan events.

I bought several at such low prices and all of them came with a 4K RAM module *and* a Math ROM. So HP-71Bs aren't rare at all, they're extremely easy to find.

(09-13-2018 10:56 PM)Gene Wrote:  The HP 71B is an amazing machine, but out of 40 people at the conference, not very many are going to try programming it as a contest machine, IMO. Does not mean it can't be done, but we try to judge ceteris paribus.

The goal is to see who comes up with a unique, fast, innovative solution using a common feature set. If speed is an issue, then you can't have the WP-34S in the mix vs. a vanilla HP-41C.[...]

So Valentin... NO offense meant... :-)

None taken. Thanks for your valuable explanation.

(09-13-2018 11:34 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  Indeed, since the contest is being judged on elegance (vs. Speed or Size), go ahead and submit a 71B solution; it can't help but be more elegant than any 41C solution (I guess my 71B bias is showing here...)

I won't submit any 71B solution to the HHC contest. Never have, never will. However I might try to privately implement an "elegant" solution and if I feel it might be of interest to the community I would post it here. Or not.

Quote:Alternate approach: Do you have a 41 Translator ROM for the 71B? Seems that meets the criteria as stated.

But it would defeat the purpose of my plea, which is that I think unfair to exclude HP-71B *BASIC*, not to run some "translated" HP-41 RPN program in the HP-71B.

(09-14-2018 04:42 AM)Joe Horn Wrote:  I hope you don't mind that I find this very funny, since I only wrote one book in my whole life, and it was about the HP-71 which I *still* love dearly. The very notion of ME ("The HP-71 Answer Man" back in the day) holding the HP-71 in contempt is hilarious.

First of all, I wasn't particularly addressing you as the one responsible for chosing those three languages and leaving 71B BASIC aside because I had no idea (nor do you mention the fact in your original post) that you are the Contest Judge (or one of them).

Thus, as you are a rational person in my book and a pretty sympathetic one at that, I was asking you only for an explanation of the rationale for excluding it, your opinion so to say. I didn't know that you were the one (or one of the ones) who actually created the rules. Anyway, I'm glad to have made you laugh ("very funny", "hilarious") with my plea.

Quote:But the primary purpose of the contest is FUN, and it would NOT be fun (but instead quite exasperating) if I had to judge more than a few different models in the VERY short amount of time allocated for judging. So I'm only including the top three HP models that attendees are most likely to bring with them. THREE is already pushing it. Most years we've only had one or two models.

Understood. That's a sufficiently sound rationale, thanks.

Quote:However, as others here have said, please post your HP-71 program, and if it's elegant enough, you might even win an Honorable Mention which will live forever in the MoHPC Digital Archive. Smile

Thanks for the kind offer, I appreciate it, but I won't submit any 71B solution to the HHC contest. Never have, never will. However I might try to privately implement an "elegant" solution and if I feel it might be of interest to the community I would post it here. Or not.

Thanks to all who replied for your valuable comments. The subject is over as far as I'm concerned.

Best regards and have a nice weekend.
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09-19-2018, 09:42 AM (This post was last modified: 09-19-2018 09:45 AM by RMollov.)
Post: #12
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
I vividly remember the times HP-71B was released. There were high expectations it was to become the King of HP calls which never happened. IMHO in a practical sense it just didn't fit the portfolio of a calculator, just another one of them pocket computers running BASIC. I bet it was a financial disaster. I possess one given to me by a colleague who never stopped using the HP-41. He labeled is a "useless". It may be the "surveyor's" niche though. Let alone it's physical size and outdated single line display.

I'd gladly give it away to anyone who would actually use it for the postage price.

Regards,
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09-19-2018, 09:57 AM (This post was last modified: 09-19-2018 09:58 AM by toml_12953.)
Post: #13
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-13-2018 10:05 PM)Valentin Albillo Wrote:  .
Hi, Joe:

(09-13-2018 02:17 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  [...]there will be three categories, each with a Most Elegant winner: HP-41CX RPN, RPL (any model), and HP PPL (Prime).

Not that I intend to attend HHC 2018 or enter any of its Programming Contests, but I would really appreciate it if you or someone else sufficiently qualified could give me some rationale or explanation on why RPN, RPL and HP PPL are admitted languages but the very capable and advanced HP-71B BASIC language is not (let alone HP-71B FORTH).

Regards.
V.
.

BASIC is actually hated by many people who were computer science graduates. They don't consider using BASIC to be real programming. They aren't familiar with modern versions of BASIC that have all the control structures of any structured language. Also, many of them believe that BASIC is an interpreter and is slow. Microcomputer versions of BASIC were implemented as interpreters due to limited memory but BASIC is neither an interpreter nor a compiler. It's a programming language that can be implemented either way. In fact there are compiled versions of BASIC that can be as fast as the fastest C compilers available.

Tom L

DM42 SN: 00025 (Beta)
SN: 00221 (Production)
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09-19-2018, 10:25 AM
Post: #14
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-19-2018 09:57 AM)toml_12953 Wrote:  They don't consider using BASIC to be real programming.

Quote:It is practically impossible to teach good programming to students that have had a prior exposure to BASIC: as potential programmers they are mentally mutilated beyond hope of regeneration.

Edsger W.Dijkstra in EWD498
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09-19-2018, 11:17 AM (This post was last modified: 09-19-2018 11:49 AM by sasa.)
Post: #15
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-19-2018 10:25 AM)Thomas Klemm Wrote:  
Quote:It is practically impossible to teach good programming to students that have had a prior exposure to BASIC: as potential programmers they are mentally mutilated beyond hope of regeneration.

Edsger W.Dijkstra in EWD498

Dijkstra was known for some radical statements regarding programming techniques as well as general statements, as this one.

The first language I learned as a 10 year old boy was BASIC, during a weekend, from first computer magazine which become available in the country. Back in that time, it was extremely difficult and expensive (practically impossible) to find anything regarding computers and electronic, as well as personal computer itself. It was followed FORTRAN, COBOL, C, Pascal, PROLOG, LISP, object version of Pascal, C++, Java...

I personally never found a single problem regarding understanding new concepts nor techniques and used programming language which was the most appropriate or required for the job. Therefore, from my point of view, quoted statement where fundamentally wrong, as it is based on wrong assumptions.

Of course, in some point of time, specialization with one or few languages is necessary, since many mature and necessary libraries become more difficult to port and maintenance on many new or personally preferable programming languages and finally that becomes the primary reason as well as popularity and preferable ones in specific field of interest, including RAD abilities.
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09-19-2018, 12:12 PM
Post: #16
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
Let's swing this discussion back to its actual topic.

Somebody somewhere made a heartfelt appeal that the contest be about something PRACTICAL for a change, so that the resulting programs can actually be USED in the real world for useful things.

I hate to disappoint him, but no, it WILL NOT be about anything practical, and there's a good reason for that, namely, it's a CONTEST, so it has to be about something NEW. Everything which is practical has already been programmed six ways from Sunday for every programmable calculator. Indeed, almost every IMPRACTICAL thing has been already programmed, e.g. how many Biorhythm programs are out there? Big Grin

So, no, this contest will be about something relatively simple, not math-heavy, but so useless in the real world that I'm quite sure nobody has attempted it before.

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09-19-2018, 12:15 PM
Post: #17
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-13-2018 02:17 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  FYI: The Programming Contest at HHC 2018 will be announced simultaneously on the morning of Saturday 29 September 2018 at the conference, and here, and on the official HHC mailing list.

Unlike usual, the winning programs will be the Most Elegant, not necessarily the fastest and/or smallest. "Most Elegant" is subjective, and will be decided by the Contest Judge at the conference early Sunday afternoon.

If you are planning on attending, you may wish to bring an HP-41CX, since there will be three categories, each with a Most Elegant winner: HP-41CX RPN, RPL (any model), and HP PPL (Prime). If your 41CX-type RPN program is submitted on something other than a 41CX, your program must be code compatible with the 41CX to win, so don't be tempted to use your Swiss model's bigger screen to impress the judge. ;-)

Details to follow...

HHC 2018 is one week away. I'm so excited!
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09-19-2018, 07:00 PM
Post: #18
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-19-2018 09:42 AM)RMollov Wrote:  I'd gladly give it away to anyone who would actually use it for the postage price.

Regards,

Hey, send it to zaphod, he wishes to have one, see his post above (I don't know how to insert multiples quotes here).

I have already one, but I must t confess that I'm a little greed to have another...Smile

Cheers

P.S.: Have a nice meeting all of you that will attend. Unfortunately I live too far away from USA, but as always, I will wait eagerly to see the videos of the presentations. Maybe one day I will attend one, who knows...
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09-21-2018, 12:25 PM
Post: #19
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
I have a friend who wants to participate but he cannot make it to the conference. Will the contest program be available on this forum?

Thanks.
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09-21-2018, 12:53 PM
Post: #20
RE: HHC 2018 Programming Contests
(09-21-2018 12:25 PM)Eddie W. Shore Wrote:  I have a friend who wants to participate but he cannot make it to the conference. Will the contest program be available on this forum?

Thanks.

Yes, Joe said he will announce it here on the Forum on Sat morning when also distributed at HHC.

--Bob Prosperi
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