Re: Yet another HP35s first impressions thread Message #16 Posted by Jeff O. on 10 Sept 2007, 2:08 p.m., in response to message #14 by DLF
Based on the amount of previous discussion, I'd say your question is definitely not too basic for this crowd.
I'm not sure if you are looking for an explanation, or just suggesting that one be included on a quick reference card. If the former, read on. If the latter, my apologies for telling you what you already know.
The socalled polar/rectangular conversions presented on pages 410, 411 and 412 of the manual are more entry/display options for complex numbers rather than true conversions. Simply put, the 35s can hold a complex number in one stack level, and display those complex numbers in either rectangular or polar form. You may enter complex numbers in either rectangular or polar form, (regardless of the display mode) by utilizing the unshifted “i” to separated the imaginary from the real part if entering a rectangular form number, or the shifted “theta” to separate the angle from the magnitude if entering a polar form number. If you enter a number in a different form than the current display mode, upon pressing Enter the calculator will convert the displayed number to the current display mode. So if you have a polar form number and you want to see the rectangular form, you put the calculator in rectangular display mode, type in the magnitude, "theta", then the angle and press Enter. The calculator will calculate the rectangular components and display them as a complex number in "re i im" format (without any spaces between the numbers and the i). If you happen to want to split that complex number into two real numbers, e.g., imaginary in stack level y and real in stack level x, there is no built in function to do so. There are also no functions to let you do rectangular to polar and polar to rectangular conversions with complex numbers represented by real numbers in two stack levels, i.e., the “oldfashioned” way.
