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Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
02-06-2016, 10:11 PM
Post: #21
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-06-2016 03:50 PM)Joseph_21sv Wrote:  Maybe, if you will pardon the blasphemy, HP axed the electronic input facility from the 42S project because they had inside information on what features examination boards would preclude the acceptance of the calculator on examinations and never told the public that part of the story.

It's possible, but it's speculation. I'm wondering if anybody has another source for this, or if anybody else has actually heard this before.

I'm also wondering if anybody might have a source for what calculators, if any, were actually certified for use on various exams in the late 1980s. Was this a thing back then? Between the late 1980s and mid-1990s I took the SAT, the ACT, several SAT achievement tests, the GRE, and several GRE subject tests, and I don't remember using any calculator on any of them...but I could be mistaken.

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02-07-2016, 05:02 PM
Post: #22
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
Concerning exact math engine on French TI...my CASSIO CLASSWIZ solves polynomial's for degree 2 with exact symbolic solutions (as well as exact extremum X,f(X) ). The CASIO 9860gii also does the same. Is the French TI exact math engine more comprehensive than this?
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02-08-2016, 07:27 AM (This post was last modified: 02-08-2016 07:29 AM by Sadsilence.)
Post: #23
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
I feel smartphones are not the death for sophisticated calculators outside school life. It came with PCs/laptops and matching software (Mathlab/Mathematica etc.) Theoratically sitting in an development department with around 30 scientists, engineers and technicians we should be best target for scientific/graphics/CAS calulators. But nobody in engineers' job lifes comes even close to the idea programming a calculator for difficult solutions when sitting in front of PC with multiple 20''+ displays.

Indeed on nearly all desks there is a calculator, normally back from school days. What they are used for is number crunching for +/-/squareroot/conversion tasks. No 1000+ functions but a reliable keyboard is most wanted. Just for fun I often use an HP-41 or even an HP-45 for a week. Regarding tactile feedback they are lightyears in front compared to an HP-35S or a Prime. For this reason simulations on PC/Tablet are no solution, too.
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02-08-2016, 08:23 AM
Post: #24
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
Safely incorporating an exam mode into Android might be rather difficult, else it would have been done already I guess.
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02-08-2016, 08:34 AM
Post: #25
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-08-2016 07:27 AM)Sadsilence Wrote:  Just for fun I often use an HP-41 or even an HP-45 for a week.
The 45 is amazing, isn't it? So much more functions and registers just one year after the 35, that already rocked the scene. I'm happy to own a beaten up sample I'm not afraid of using :-).
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02-08-2016, 09:02 AM
Post: #26
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-08-2016 08:34 AM)Thomas Radtke Wrote:  The 45 is amazing, isn't it? So much more functions and registers just one year after the 35, that already rocked the scene. I'm happy to own a beaten up sample I'm not afraid of using :-).

HP 45 is so appealling to me cause it's hidden timer feature (besides fact that all of that series are made for eternity). Even created a PCB which gives it quartz watch accuarcy. And normally I do not miss a feature for everyday calculations.
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02-08-2016, 09:10 AM
Post: #27
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
lrdheat: I know that the 83PCE's exact math engine has better support for some sine / cosine forms, and for fractions. One can switch from approximate to exact answer using a key.
I'm no expert of that exact math engine, though.
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02-09-2016, 03:34 AM
Post: #28
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-08-2016 07:27 AM)Sadsilence Wrote:  I feel smartphones are not the death for sophisticated calculators outside school life. It came with PCs/laptops and matching software (Mathlab/Mathematica etc.) Theoratically sitting in an development department with around 30 scientists, engineers and technicians we should be best target for scientific/graphics/CAS calulators. But nobody in engineers' job lifes comes even close to the idea programming a calculator for difficult solutions when sitting in front of PC with multiple 20''+ displays.

Indeed on nearly all desks there is a calculator, normally back from school days. What they are used for is number crunching for +/-/squareroot/conversion tasks. No 1000+ functions but a reliable keyboard is most wanted. Just for fun I often use an HP-41 or even an HP-45 for a week. Regarding tactile feedback they are lightyears in front compared to an HP-35S or a Prime. For this reason simulations on PC/Tablet are no solution, too.

A feeling that smartphones, PCs/laptops, tablets, whatever second party is the death for advanced calculators outside of education is ignoring the unbroken run of advanced calculator faux pas by Casio, HP and TI since the end of the 1980s. This began with the cost cutting on the HP-42S which caused suspicion that HP were cowed by examination regulation boards, the faulty mechanics of the clamshell design of the HP-18C and 28C, the awkward way the HP-17B and 42S support user entry of alphabetic characters and the controversial programming model of the HP-17B, 18C and 27S, all of which dishonored advanced calculators and did much to drive scientists, engineers and technicians into far more expensive PC/laptop+CAS setups. None of these groups really wanted to do it because it meant less money they could save for their personal lives, and heaven knows, they could not all have been career people. In other words, the real death for advanced calculators was the chaos at their own place.
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02-09-2016, 09:55 AM
Post: #29
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-09-2016 03:34 AM)Joseph_21sv Wrote:  A feeling that smartphones, PCs/laptops, tablets, whatever second party is the death for advanced calculators outside of education is ignoring the unbroken run of advanced calculator faux pas by Casio, HP and TI since the end of the 1980s. This began with the cost cutting on the HP-42S which caused suspicion that HP were cowed by examination regulation boards, the faulty mechanics of the clamshell design of the HP-18C and 28C, the awkward way the HP-17B and 42S support user entry of alphabetic characters and the controversial programming model of the HP-17B, 18C and 27S, all of which dishonored advanced calculators and did much to drive scientists, engineers and technicians into far more expensive PC/laptop+CAS setups. None of these groups really wanted to do it because it meant less money they could save for their personal lives, and heaven knows, they could not all have been career people. In other words, the real death for advanced calculators was the chaos at their own place.

You may be right. I came to vintage calculators after dropping my HP-28S back from student days from my desk around end of 2014. Otherwise it would still work. For years it was a reliable number cruncher and I started looking for a modern replacement. HP Prime, TI nSpire. Wonderful and powerful tools with a bad keyboard and a dschungel of menus where I previously only had to press one or two keys. Then an HP-35S. It fits better to my needs but keyboard is a shame compared to what was possible 30-40 years ago! What happened between end of 1980's and 2013 I am not really aware of.

Nevertheless I quit sophisticated calculations on my calculator when starting job career. Stuff I use here belongs to company. So money is not key point for useing it. And we all use a PC etc. at home, so it is already there. Of course it is fun to play around e.g. with an HP-41, an HP-3468 and using an HP82143 printer to monitor battery charging, but every microcontrolled charger is doing the same with much less effort.

It is a little bit like horses and cars. Even excited horse men/women does not use it as "transport vehicle" but just for fun. Still horses are beautiful and strong animals, but their time as main mobility factor is gone..
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02-09-2016, 11:06 AM (This post was last modified: 02-09-2016 11:58 AM by Ángel Martin.)
Post: #30
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-09-2016 09:55 AM)Sadsilence Wrote:  What happened between end of 1980's and 2013 I am not really aware of.

corporate business driven by insatiable greed, and a few other minor things that completely turned the meaning of quality and product value upside down?
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02-09-2016, 12:13 PM (This post was last modified: 02-09-2016 03:38 PM by Luigi Vampa.)
Post: #31
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
Scientific calculators' market has shrunk so much, specially for RPN calcs, that the latter seems no longer juicy enough for a big player like HP.
As per the comments in this forum (I am based in Euroland) it seems to me TI has done a very good lobby job in the US. From Japan, Casio keeps marketing their algebraic thinny machines worldwide.
The 50g is gone, the plain-old 35s seems faulty and basic, and students' Prime seems RPN challenged. There isn't a commercial true RPN scientific calc being massively marketed now, is there?... as the song says, 'those days are gone' :.! Sorry, it is rainy, windy and cloudy in Madrid today :O)
At least the RPN spirit seems handed over a swift and small company, like SM, who provides the love and care no big corporation can.

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02-10-2016, 06:48 AM
Post: #32
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-01-2016 11:00 PM)Luigi Vampa Wrote:  Sorry for interrupting, but I would be very grateful, if someone could explain this graph:


This wouldn't agree with the graph in my first post in this thread, unless à la cheapo manufacturers from China went taking bigger and bigger stakes of the calculators' market :.!

I have had several meetings with various bank people last year, mostly related to mortgage. My impression is that they use web apps, not calculators so much. If they need to explain things with a calculator, they need to scribble a lot on paper. If they use various web apps, they can get all numbers printed and give a hard copy to the customer (me).

They actually all seem to have a calculator, but it is just a cheap simple one, not a business calculator.

I am not at all surprised that there are a more growing interest in scientific than business calculators.
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02-10-2016, 07:10 AM
Post: #33
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-09-2016 12:13 PM)Luigi Vampa Wrote:  Scientific calculators' market has shrunk so much, specially for RPN calcs, that the latter seems no longer juicy enough for a big player like HP.
As per the comments in this forum (I am based in Euroland) it seems to me TI has done a very good lobby job in the US. From Japan, Casio keeps marketing their algebraic thinny machines worldwide.
The 50g is gone, the plain-old 35s seems faulty and basic, and students' Prime seems RPN challenged. There isn't a commercial true RPN scientific calc being massively marketed now, is there?... as the song says, 'those days are gone' :.! Sorry, it is rainy, windy and cloudy in Madrid today :O)
At least the RPN spirit seems handed over a swift and small company, like SM, who provides the love and care no big corporation can.

I am so sick and tired of HP. They always want to sell their business calculators and offer very mediocre scientific ones. Their sales are probably pretty awful actually and here is why.

In the eighties I could walk into a decent bookstore or office store and choose between many HP models. Well built calculators that the HP company stood behind.

Since then, they produce only a few and less appealing models. What is worse, they cannot be found anywhere. I cannot walk into a store in Sweden and find an HP calculator. 5 years ago I was in the process of getting a netbook in Taiwan, so I visited a lot of tech shops. I always looked for calculators as well. I found zero, zip, none, absolutely no HP calculator anywhere in Taiwan. I could easily get Casio and sometimes TI, but never any HP model. Totally impossible!
Today, I look around a bit in Canada and US and I still cannot find any HP calculator in shops, they are less common than UFOs.

So, it should come as no surprise to anyone (except perhaps HP) that HP RPN calculators does not sell. They are simply not anywhere to be found, not even the business models.

Here is what HP should do. Stop listening to bean counters. Make calculators that you stand behind. Yes, that means fixing bugs in them and keeping them on the market.
Just take your HP12C moulds and bring back the HP15C, perhaps the 11C and the 16C as well. Then bring back the HP41 as well. You apparently cannot make a new decent calculator, so why not just bring back some old ones instead? All those models are good (even though I am not so thrilled by the programming model on the voyagers).
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02-10-2016, 07:47 AM (This post was last modified: 02-10-2016 07:48 AM by ElectroDuende.)
Post: #34
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-10-2016 07:10 AM)hth Wrote:  Since then, they produce only a few and less appealing models. What is worse, they cannot be found anywhere. I cannot walk into a store in Sweden and find an HP calculator. 5 years ago I was in the process of getting a netbook in Taiwan, so I visited a lot of tech shops. I always looked for calculators as well. I found zero, zip, none, absolutely no HP calculator anywhere in Taiwan. I could easily get Casio and sometimes TI, but never any HP model. Totally impossible!
Today, I look around a bit in Canada and US and I still cannot find any HP calculator in shops, they are less common than UFOs.

Same here in Spain. I remember when I entered the Engineering School, in mid 90's, that any decent bookstore or "thecnical drawing store" (these have also dissapeared) had HP48's and pioneers on display.

Now, in my city, only 2 stores (a big department store and a big office supply shop) have some of them (50G, 12C and 17Bii, usually).
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02-10-2016, 08:27 AM
Post: #35
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-10-2016 07:10 AM)hth Wrote:  I am so sick and tired of HP. They always want to sell their business calculators and offer very mediocre scientific ones.
Find another pocketable calculator like the 3xS series that offers programming and equation solving, not to mention RPN.
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02-10-2016, 11:11 AM (This post was last modified: 02-10-2016 11:11 AM by Ángel Martin.)
Post: #36
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-10-2016 07:10 AM)hth Wrote:  .... Then bring back the HP41 as well. You apparently cannot make a new decent calculator, so why not just bring back some old ones instead? All those models are good (even though I am not so thrilled by the programming model on the voyagers).

In case you haven't heard - The 41*is* back - on steroids: it's called the '41CL", check their website here
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02-10-2016, 11:34 AM
Post: #37
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
(02-10-2016 11:11 AM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  
(02-10-2016 07:10 AM)hth Wrote:  .... Then bring back the HP41 as well. You apparently cannot make a new decent calculator, so why not just bring back some old ones instead? All those models are good (even though I am not so thrilled by the programming model on the voyagers).

In case you haven't heard - The 41*is* back - on steroids: it's called the '41CL", check their website here

Although you still need an old "fullnut" 41C* to morph.
I'd be really pleased by a re-issue, with quality components.

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02-10-2016, 12:53 PM (This post was last modified: 02-10-2016 03:28 PM by emece67.)
Post: #38
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
I also think that, after the Pioneer series, all hp scientific machines are mainly crap, with perhaps the sole exception of some of the flagship models (say 50g?). From the 33s up to now they have obvious mechanical, software or both kinds of flaws.

But that does not change the fact that scientific handheld calculators are an old fashioned product whose golden times have passed and whose current main public are just we.

Will any present day student spend 200+€ in a true, high quality handheld scientific calculator when his/her smartphone can more or less do the same? And, if the calculator app in the phone cannot do it, Wolfram Alpha or any other online tool will. And, for the more challenging, application specific problems, a PC based tool will exist to solve them.

Today university students do buy calculators just because they can use it at (some) exams. If smartphones/PCs were allowed at exams, not a single university student will buy a calculator. There are large amounts of used scientific calculators at sell at the end of each academic year, as students do not perceive these machines as everyday tools, but as the tool needed to pass exams, so: no more exams, no more the need to have it.

The lack of a real keyboard is not a problem for young people, they have spent years typing at their smartphones with no problems at all.

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02-10-2016, 09:27 PM (This post was last modified: 02-14-2016 11:12 PM by Luigi Vampa.)
Post: #39
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
Just curious... does anybody know at which point in time Mr. Hewlett no longer followed up the calculators business unit?
Maybe it was when HP designs started to depart from its roots.

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02-21-2016, 07:40 PM
Post: #40
RE: Smartphone killed the calculator star. Some thoughts... and data too
I got that! Trevor Horn and the rest of The Buggles would be proud!
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