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The WP 43s: Is it dead?
02-17-2016, 07:17 PM
Post: #1
The WP 43s: Is it dead?
A while ago, I stumbled across this project and was very interested. Seeing as it had not been updated since 2014, I was wondering if it was a dead project or not, especially since the HP 30b has been discontinued and the WP 34s may need new hardware itself. Does anyone have any info on the future of WP calculators?


-M. D. Barrett
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02-17-2016, 09:56 PM (This post was last modified: 02-17-2016 11:09 PM by Luigi Vampa.)
Post: #2
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
I am a rookie, but I can say to you that your questions (impossible to overlook) seem to me like the elephant in the room :o!

Edit
You can find the main thread about the promising WP43s. Unfortunately, it was closed just some weeks ago.

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02-26-2016, 10:45 PM (This post was last modified: 02-26-2016 10:48 PM by walter b.)
Post: #3
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(02-17-2016 09:56 PM)Luigi Vampa Wrote:  You can find the main thread about the promising WP43s. Unfortunately, it was closed just some weeks ago.

You may call this damage due to force majeure. Might also be called collateral damage in the USA.

([:-/
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12-30-2016, 04:56 PM
Post: #4
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Could the WP43s breathe it's first breath within a Swiss Micros calculator shell?
Could the firmware be adapted/redone for the Swiss Micros ARM chip?

"they run on a battery saving LPC1115 ARM processor emulating the NUT processor"
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12-30-2016, 05:31 PM (This post was last modified: 12-30-2016 05:31 PM by Maximilian Hohmann.)
Post: #5
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(12-30-2016 04:56 PM)Briancady413 Wrote:  Could the WP43s breathe it's first breath within a Swiss Micros calculator shell?

How would that work? The Swiss Micros units are diminutive calculators with a one-line display, the WP43s was supposed to be a full-scale calculator with an 8-line graphics screen. The screen alone is probably larger than the Swiss Micros shell...
I guess the WP43s project is dead and buried with the main developer banned from this forum (indefinitely as it seems).

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Max
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12-30-2016, 06:17 PM
Post: #6
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(12-30-2016 05:31 PM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  
(12-30-2016 04:56 PM)Briancady413 Wrote:  Could the WP43s breathe it's first breath within a Swiss Micros calculator shell?

How would that work? The Swiss Micros units are diminutive calculators with a one-line display, the WP43s was supposed to be a full-scale calculator with an 8-line graphics screen. The screen alone is probably larger than the Swiss Micros shell...
I guess the WP43s project is dead and buried with the main developer banned from this forum (indefinitely as it seems).

Regards
Max
Maximillian;
a) As discussed here recently; S.M. is putting the finishing touches on another full size calculator, this time it's portrait with a large multiline screen. I plan on buying one when it's ready.
b) So; Marcus, Paul, and all their testers and collaborators on this site such as bit and many others are what, just chopped liver? Your "main developer" banned himself by not being willing or able to interact like an adult with other members. He can keep sending whining PMs and starting fake accounts on this site till he is recognized (thank you members who use "report"). He will not be allowed to pollute the boards.
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12-30-2016, 09:31 PM
Post: #7
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(12-30-2016 05:31 PM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  I guess the WP43s project is dead and buried with the main developer banned from this forum (indefinitely as it seems).

There is some progress still, mostly on the UI design. Neither Marcus nor myself have the spare time to implement it -- the 34S was several years of work, quite a bit of it effectively full time. The 43S will be as much again I suspect. We know how to implement a lot of it but there are some fuzzy areas that haven't crystallised yet.

Porting the 34S firmware as is to a DM device would be easier but rather pointless IMO.


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12-31-2016, 01:14 AM
Post: #8
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(12-30-2016 09:31 PM)Paul Dale Wrote:  Porting the 34S firmware as is to a DM device would be easier but rather pointless IMO.

Although I would much rather see a WP43S class machine, I think the WP34S firmware would be FAR more useful and satisfying in h/w such as the forthcoming DM42P chassis. The cheesy and inconsistent keyboard of the HP-30b (to say nothing of the 20b) and the limited screen prevent me from using the current 34S. It's brilliant s/w trapped inside crappy h/w. Naturally, the huge screen on the DM h/w would require (or at least beg for) improved screen utilization, so it would not make sense to be a direct port as-is, but it would be a very welcome option with even mildly improved display capabilities. Of course, it's easy to suggest how other folks might use their time, but I just felt that 'pointless' was a tad unfair. We can hope...

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12-31-2016, 02:32 AM
Post: #9
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Pointless might have been a bit strong. Almost pointless then Smile


The 34S was designed around the limitations of the 30b's hardware. The limited screen resolution is baked into the firmware. It would take more than a little effort to gainfully use the DM42's screen -- this effort would be more than a halfway step to the 43S. The DM42 has an extra row of keys, redesigning the layout to use these would be another major piece of work -- nice consistent layouts are difficult.

The possibility of a 36S being such a step was mooted but the extra effort to go the whole way to the 43S didn't make it seem worthwhile.


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01-14-2017, 06:41 PM
Post: #10
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Quote:I guess the WP43s project is dead and buried with the main developer banned from this forum (indefinitely as it seems).

Oh, that actually makes sense. I bought the PDF of the manual, and was shocked that it was so egregiously watermarked that I couldn't read it on my color iPad. I complained about it, and he got defensive and abusive towards me. Not a stable individual, in my assessment. Sigh. It was a neat project.
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01-16-2017, 11:35 AM
Post: #11
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-14-2017 06:41 PM)dylanmc Wrote:  
Quote:I guess the WP43s project is dead and buried with the main developer banned from this forum (indefinitely as it seems).

Oh, that actually makes sense. I bought the PDF of the manual, and was shocked that it was so egregiously watermarked that I couldn't read it on my color iPad. I complained about it, and he got defensive and abusive towards me. Not a stable individual, in my assessment. Sigh. It was a neat project.

Yeah, two things are holding back the 34S in my opinion: the shoddy keyboard of the 30b, and the really strange behavior regarding the manual for this open source project.
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01-16-2017, 05:35 PM
Post: #12
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-16-2017 11:35 AM)Dave Britten Wrote:  
(01-14-2017 06:41 PM)dylanmc Wrote:  Oh, that actually makes sense. I bought the PDF of the manual, and was shocked that it was so egregiously watermarked that I couldn't read it on my color iPad. I complained about it, and he got defensive and abusive towards me. Not a stable individual, in my assessment. Sigh. It was a neat project.

Yeah, two things are holding back the 34S in my opinion: the shoddy keyboard of the 30b, and the really strange behavior regarding the manual for this open source project.

Dave; Yes. Those two things, plus:
-The funky top line of the screen. Two lines modeled on the bottom line would have been much better for high end calculator purposes.
-Much of the ample-in-size memory is not of a type easily accessible to us mortals and so goes unused.
-Discontinuation of the hardware.

I like them enough to have worn out a 20b conversion and am now on a 30b, but there were hardware problems that were unsurmountable. Sam Kim's vision for the 20b-30b was as a third-party programmable platform and keyboard for others to buy and use on their products. As that it was a success but not in sales for that.
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01-16-2017, 06:55 PM
Post: #13
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-16-2017 05:35 PM)Den Belillo (Martinez Ca.) Wrote:  Dave; Yes. Those two things, plus:
-The funky top line of the screen. Two lines modeled on the bottom line would have been much better for high end calculator purposes.
-Much of the ample-in-size memory is not of a type easily accessible to us mortals and so goes unused.
-Discontinuation of the hardware.

I definitely agree those are drawbacks, but I didn't find them significant enough to make me not want to use the 34S. The unreliable keyboard hardware, on the other hand... It's a really great bit of software, but alas, it couldn't dethrone my 48SX, largely due to factors outside the software itself. We'll see how the DM42 does.
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01-16-2017, 09:58 PM
Post: #14
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-16-2017 05:35 PM)Den Belillo (Martinez Ca.) Wrote:  -Much of the ample-in-size memory is not of a type easily accessible to us mortals and so goes unused.

Where's this unused memory? I'm not aware of memory going unused.
  • Flash is full -- firmware plus library pages use everything available.
  • Non-volatile RAM is full -- all 2kb of it.
  • Volatile RAM is full -- we've had to fix stack overflow issues in this 4kb region.
  • We've even used the semi-volatile 55 bytes of RAM in the LCD controller.

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01-17-2017, 08:34 PM
Post: #15
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-16-2017 09:58 PM)Paul Dale Wrote:  
(01-16-2017 05:35 PM)Den Belillo (Martinez Ca.) Wrote:  -Much of the ample-in-size memory is not of a type easily accessible to us mortals and so goes unused.

Where's this unused memory? I'm not aware of memory going unused.
  • Flash is full -- firmware plus library pages use everything available.
  • Non-volatile RAM is full -- all 2kb of it.
  • Volatile RAM is full -- we've had to fix stack overflow issues in this 4kb region.
  • We've even used the semi-volatile 55 bytes of RAM in the LCD controller.

Pauli
.
Paul;

I don't have time to re-read my 370 page hardbound 34s manual and all the associated posts here. I remember something though. Isn't there a chunk of memory that is designated by the hardware to be used for key assignments (but not data)? IIRC it can be filled with programs assigned to specific keys, however; those new functions need to be read in and not pushed in as programs from the keyboard. That's what I was referring to as not "easily accessible to us mortals".

The old brain was under the impression that some of this space was left unused, but I could have misunderstood since I didn't experiment with custom builds, or I could be remembering something from your development stage that is no longer true. That's the "unused memory" I was talking about.

I wore out my first 34s, but I didn't wear out each and every function. There's a lot of them.
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01-18-2017, 01:00 AM
Post: #16
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Nope, no key assignments on the 34S.
We used all the memory we could find Smile


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01-18-2017, 02:03 AM
Post: #17
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Old brain Den, or to much screech?

Wink wink!
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01-18-2017, 03:52 AM
Post: #18
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-18-2017 02:03 AM)Geoff Quickfall Wrote:  Old brain Den, or to much screech?

Wink wink!

Geoff; There's still almost a gallon of that. If you're ever low on jet fuel in San Francisco; let me know.
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01-25-2017, 09:37 PM
Post: #19
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
Speaking of resurrecting dead projects... does anyone know of an LCD about 25cm (10 inch) wide by 7.5 - 10cm (3 - 4 inch) high? Touch screen preferred but no essential.

One of the many threads mentioned how a calculator needs to justify the space it consumes on a desk. The smallest keyboards I know are the 60% series like the POK3R and HHKB, which have no function keys (you use a key combination to emulate them). If I can find the right sized LCD, I could start designing a Zero Client Terminal.

Stay with me here, it gets relevant.

  1. For everyday use (Hub Mode), this device would act as a USB Hub, and sit just at the top of your keyboard of choice.
    The screen, if a touch screen, would act similar to the Touch Bar in the new Apple laptops, OR the menu buttons the 43S used to mention. USB mouse and / or Flash memory could also be attached
  2. Got a Raspberry Pi, or similar? Is it plugged into some remote area? Are you reluctant to carry around a highly expensive laptop, to connect to it?
    As a Zero Client (Terminal Mode), the screen can give you a few lines of text. With battery support, it would be possible to support Ethernet.
  3. (Calculator Mode) is where the 43S background really comes in. A quick key combination puts the machine into calculator / spreadsheet mode, allowing you to crunch numbers.
    While generally for offline use, this could also be helpful if the host PC is doesn't have a suitable app installed (or you are plugged into that dev board)
  4. If you are going to support data crunching, you may as well include a (Text Mode) text editor as well.
  5. (Secure Mode) is actually based on a suggestion from the Hackaday website.
    The Intel Management Engine has complete access to the innards of a PC, which makes users nervous.
    If actual encryption / decryption is handled externally, on this device, the PC never sees the plaintext version of an encrypted message.

I think those are enough applications to justify the desk space just above a keyboard.

There are several zero client designs around. Ones with LCD monitor aren't so common. Monitors the dimensions of a 60% keyboard have, to date proved mighty hard to find: it's an odd aspect ratio. Any suggestions?
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01-26-2017, 04:35 AM
Post: #20
RE: The WP 43s: Is it dead?
(01-25-2017 09:37 PM)sa-penguin Wrote:  Speaking of resurrecting dead projects... does anyone know of an LCD about 25cm (10 inch) wide by 7.5 - 10cm (3 - 4 inch) high? Touch screen preferred but no essential.
Adafruit sells a nice 7 inch touchscreen that is designed to be used with the raspberry
pi. Perhaps this one would be close to what you are looking for.
https://www.adafruit.com/products/2718
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