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Wiki?
05-18-2015, 02:13 AM
Post: #1
Wiki?
Hi Everybody,

I have owned and regularly used a HP-28s since it was introduced and I have always loved that calculator to pieces. Two things annoy me though:

1. The lack of I/O and external storage
2. The really odd batteries which are next to impossible to locate where I am living

Because of this - and for fun - I decided to get myself a HP 50g. A few things became immediately clear:

1. The HP 50g is a lot harder to use than the HP-28, primarily because of the keyboard.
2. The documentation is quite poor and disorganised.

I _know_ this has been discussed before a few times, but it really seems that the HP calculators in general is a perfect target for a specialized Mediawiki-based site. So, the question is, why has this never materialized? And that is really what I am trying to ask here. Is it because nobody really care about these dinosaurs any longer? Is it because nobody want to share their knowledge? Or is it simply because nobody ever got it up and running?

I am quite familiar with Mediawiki and I do have a server that could be used for the purpose, so if anybody were interested, I'd be happy to get the server up and running. As mentioned earlier I am in the process of getting my head around the device, so I will probably put my notes on a wiki anyway (since that is usually how I work).

I am aware that there is a quite good wiki for the Texas calculators and that is pretty much what I had in mind for the HP calculators.

So please, anybody's got any thoughts on this topic.
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05-18-2015, 02:40 AM (This post was last modified: 05-18-2015 02:41 AM by Steve Simpkin.)
Post: #2
RE: Wiki?
While I don't know of a wiki for the HP50G, here are some resources that may be helpful:

http://www.hpcalc.org/

http://www.neng.usu.edu/cee/faculty/gurr...P49G+.html

http://resources.thiel.edu/mathproject/C...efault.htm
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05-18-2015, 03:44 AM (This post was last modified: 05-18-2015 03:44 AM by lbthomsen.)
Post: #3
RE: Wiki?
(05-18-2015 02:40 AM)Steve Simpkin Wrote:  While I don't know of a wiki for the HP50G, here are some resources that may be helpful:

http://www.hpcalc.org/

http://www.neng.usu.edu/cee/faculty/gurr...P49G+.html

http://resources.thiel.edu/mathproject/C...efault.htm

I hadn't seen the second one but it appears to have the same problem as the other sites. They contains a lot of zip files or pdf documents, but it is a pain to link together. The benefit of having the documentation in a Wiki would obviously be the cross linking possible. I appreciate your comment though Smile
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05-18-2015, 06:12 AM
Post: #4
RE: Wiki?
There is also Bruce's wiki.

Greetings,
    Massimo

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05-18-2015, 11:31 AM
Post: #5
RE: Wiki?
On a related note, you might want to track down a secondhand 48SX (or S, but the price difference is pretty negligible, and the SX leaves the door open for more RAM). It'll feel very at-home to a 28S user, and doesn't badly clutter up the menu and keyboard layouts like the 49G did. Not to mention the mechanical design being worlds better than the later models.

I have a 28C, 48SX, 48GX, 49G, and 50G, and it's the 48SX that stays on my desk.
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05-18-2015, 01:16 PM
Post: #6
RE: Wiki?
(05-18-2015 11:31 AM)Dave Britten Wrote:  On a related note, you might want to track down a secondhand 48SX (or S, but the price difference is pretty negligible, and the SX leaves the door open for more RAM). It'll feel very at-home to a 28S user, and doesn't badly clutter up the menu and keyboard layouts like the 49G did. Not to mention the mechanical design being worlds better than the later models.

I have a 28C, 48SX, 48GX, 49G, and 50G, and it's the 48SX that stays on my desk.

I am genuinely shocked how bad the keyboard layout is on the 50g - it quite simply doesn't make sense. I _can_ live with the Enter key in the lower right corner, that is not too bad (even though I would have preferred it above the numeric keyboard), but the rest is insane. I constantly find myself searching around countless menus to find some command. I never remember having to do that on the 28.

I guess that's why I thought a good Wiki was needed Wink
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05-18-2015, 03:07 PM
Post: #7
RE: Wiki?
(05-18-2015 02:13 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  ...Because of this - and for fun - I decided to get myself a HP 50g. A few things became immediately clear:

1. The HP 50g is a lot harder to use than the HP-28, primarily because of the keyboard.
2. The documentation is quite poor and disorganised.

Do you have the HP 50g Advanced Users Reference Manual? It's neither poor nor disorganized. I'll bet it'll help you far better than any wiki out there.

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05-19-2015, 03:29 AM
Post: #8
RE: Wiki?
(05-18-2015 03:07 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  Do you have the HP 50g Advanced Users Reference Manual? It's neither poor nor disorganized. I'll bet it'll help you far better than any wiki out there.

I do yes. It is not poor but being in PDF format it is hard to find the necessary information. A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. But I guess there might not be enough interest in these rather old devices.
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05-19-2015, 11:47 PM
Post: #9
RE: Wiki?
(05-19-2015 03:29 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. But I guess there might not be enough interest in these rather old devices.

Many years ago, I had high hopes of building an online "CURE" (Compleat User RPL Encyclopedia) which would serve the purpose you seek... but after spending a few months tinkering with it, the tedium got boring, and all progress stopped. It never even got put into wiki form, although having thorough cross-references was a goal. You can see its dessicated skeleton here: http://holyjoe.net/hp/CURE/ I think the only tab with any content is the "Numbers and Symbols" tab. Old timers might enjoy reading the names of the non-existent "Articles" in each letter tab; some are quite arcane. I think each deserves a full-length article... some day.

Maybe I'll get back to the CURE when I retire and nobody uses RPL any more. Wink

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05-19-2015, 11:59 PM (This post was last modified: 05-20-2015 12:30 AM by Dave Frederickson.)
Post: #10
RE: Wiki?
(05-19-2015 11:47 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  Old timers might enjoy reading the names of the non-existent "Articles" in each letter tab; some are quite arcane. I think each deserves a full-length article... some day.

Frozen Hamster Butt sounds intriguing. Smile
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05-20-2015, 12:10 AM
Post: #11
RE: Wiki?
(05-19-2015 11:47 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  
(05-19-2015 03:29 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. But I guess there might not be enough interest in these rather old devices.

Many years ago, I had high hopes of building an online "CURE" (Compleat User RPL Encyclopedia) which would serve the purpose you seek... but after spending a few months tinkering with it, the tedium got boring, and all progress stopped. It never even got put into wiki form, although having thorough cross-references was a goal. You can see its dessicated skeleton here: http://holyjoe.net/hp/CURE/ I think the only tab with any content is the "Numbers and Symbols" tab. Old timers might enjoy reading the names of the non-existent "Articles" in each letter tab; some are quite arcane. I think each deserves a full-length article... some day.

Maybe I'll get back to the CURE when I retire and nobody uses RPL any more. Wink

This is exactly what I had in mind. The problem, as you discovered yourself, is that it is an almost impossible task for one person. That is why the Wiki part of it is important in my opinion, at least if it is possible to whip up enough interest so that more than one person will actually create articles and contents. By using Mediawiki with Semantic Mediawiki extension a lot of the cross indexing could be done automatically (you create an article describing one key, various key lists and indexes can be generated automatically).
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05-20-2015, 05:52 PM
Post: #12
RE: Wiki?
(05-19-2015 03:29 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  
(05-18-2015 03:07 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  Do you have the HP 50g Advanced Users Reference Manual? It's neither poor nor disorganized. ...

I do yes. It is not poor but being in PDF format it is hard to find the necessary information. A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. ...

The PDF file for the HP50g AUR guide does not have any internal links, but that is entirely due to the choice of the PDF creator. I see in the document properties for the PDF that it may have been produced from a file named "HP 50g AUR.doc", a Word DOC file. If anyone has that file, it should not take much effort to produce a PDF with links for the TOC entries and the Index entries, and maybe the See also: items.
Hmm, I see where Bart DB did something like this before, and was rather badly treated for his efforts! Maybe someone with his version of the PDF file could send it to you?
I am thinking about asking permissionrequest@hp.com about releasing the DOC source file for the guide now, since this product is being discontinued.
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05-21-2015, 06:38 AM
Post: #13
RE: Wiki?
(05-20-2015 05:52 PM)everettr Wrote:  
(05-19-2015 03:29 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  I do yes. It is not poor but being in PDF format it is hard to find the necessary information. A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. ...

The PDF file for the HP50g AUR guide does not have any internal links, but that is entirely due to the choice of the PDF creator. I see in the document properties for the PDF that it may have been produced from a file named "HP 50g AUR.doc", a Word DOC file. If anyone has that file, it should not take much effort to produce a PDF with links for the TOC entries and the Index entries, and maybe the See also: items.
Hmm, I see where Bart DB did something like this before, and was rather badly treated for his efforts! Maybe someone with his version of the PDF file could send it to you?
I am thinking about asking permissionrequest@hp.com about releasing the DOC source file for the guide now, since this product is being discontinued.

I wonder if they would accept the text to be turned into a reference Wiki. Being able to quote that document verbatim would be helpful.
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05-21-2015, 12:17 PM
Post: #14
RE: Wiki?
(05-19-2015 03:29 AM)lbthomsen Wrote:  
(05-18-2015 03:07 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  Do you have the HP 50g Advanced Users Reference Manual? It's neither poor nor disorganized. I'll bet it'll help you far better than any wiki out there.

I do yes. It is not poor but being in PDF format it is hard to find the necessary information. A proper hyperlinked version of that would be rather nice I think. But I guess there might not be enough interest in these rather old devices.

I just checked the PDF and find that it is not locked. It wouldn't take too long (a few hours of work) to create bookmarks to the various sections in the pdf. And, if one wished, links could also be created, although this would take a lot longer to do and would quickly become tedious.

Personally, I hate overly linked documents as well as overly linked web pages. I never found them very useful. But I do like PDF's that have a complete set of bookmarks - especially if they are done in a nested way. I can then quickly go to any main section, or to a subsection within.

Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Bill
Smithville, NJ
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05-21-2015, 05:58 PM
Post: #15
RE: Wiki?
(05-21-2015 12:17 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  I just checked the PDF and find that it is not locked. It wouldn't take too long (a few hours of work) to create bookmarks to the various sections in the pdf. And, if one wished, links could also be created, although this would take a lot longer to do and would quickly become tedious.

Personally, I hate overly linked documents as well as overly linked web pages. I never found them very useful. But I do like PDF's that have a complete set of bookmarks - especially if they are done in a nested way. I can then quickly go to any main section, or to a subsection within.

Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Already been done, but as mentioned before, it was retracted when HP purportedly expressed displeasure. In any case, you can find it here (until I'm ordered to remove it by the Power That Be): HP 50g AUR with bookmarks and links on table of contents and index.

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05-21-2015, 06:32 PM
Post: #16
RE: Wiki?
RE HP 50g / 49g+ / 48gii Acknowledgements:

"Hewlett Packard would like to thank the following for their contribution:
Jordi Hidalgo, Joe Horn, Tony Hutchins, Ted Kerber, Wlodek Mier Jedrzejowicz, Richard Nelson, Eric Rechlin, Jake Schwartz and Gene Wright."

As should we all.
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05-21-2015, 07:02 PM
Post: #17
RE: Wiki?
(05-21-2015 05:58 PM)Joe Horn Wrote:  
(05-21-2015 12:17 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Already been done, but as mentioned before, it was retracted when HP purportedly expressed displeasure. In any case, you can find it here (until I'm ordered to remove it by the Power That Be): HP 50g AUR with bookmarks and links on table of contents and index.

Joe,

Thanks for the link - very nicely done. You would think HP would just replace their version with this version and say thank you. Big companies can be so weird on their documentation.

While I don't have an HP-50g at present, I may get one someday and have thus saved a copy of the bookmarked version.

Bill
Smithville, NJ
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05-22-2015, 10:25 PM
Post: #18
RE: Wiki?
(05-21-2015 12:17 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Bill
Smithville, NJ

Yes, they would.
http://h30499.www3.hp.com/t5/Calculators...5139#M9792
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05-23-2015, 02:50 AM
Post: #19
RE: Wiki?
(05-22-2015 10:25 PM)BartDB Wrote:  
(05-21-2015 12:17 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Yes, they would.
http://h30499.www3.hp.com/t5/Calculators...5139#M9792

Aha, I was *hoping* that the generous person who created that bookmarked version would chime in. Thanks, Bart!

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05-23-2015, 12:39 PM
Post: #20
RE: Wiki?
(05-22-2015 10:25 PM)BartDB Wrote:  
(05-21-2015 12:17 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  Would HP get upset if someone created a bookmarked version?

Bill
Smithville, NJ

Yes, they would.
http://h30499.www3.hp.com/t5/Calculators...5139#M9792

Was the offended party really representing HP though? It seemed like he wanted to, but wasn't in any official capacity.
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