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Hello,

Inspired by an adjacent thread I have a petition:

I think the HP41 USER mode has a big advantage over the HP42S Custom Menu:

When you don't enter or debug a program, you have 14 Keys you don't need:
LBL, GTO, SST, BST, ISG, RTN, x=y?, x<=y?, x>y?, x=0?, SF, CF, FS?, BEEP
If you don't need statistics, you can add another 3: Sigma+, Sigma- and CLSigma

You can reassign all these keys and you still have all the mathematical functions in USER mode.
And you normally don't have to leave this mode.

If you use the HP42S Custom Menu, you lose direct access to all the essential mathematical keys
of the top row - you need to press SHIFT-TOP.FCN and the key: 3 or 4 presses instead of 1 or 2.
IMO this is the biggest design flaw of the HP-42S (together with the impossibility of bidirectional communication).

So my plea to Thomas Okken for the wonderful Free42:
Please make an option to get another row of keys like the DM42.
And make the default assignment (if no menu is selected) the custom keys 1-6 (shifted 7-12).
Then you have:
- always access to the essential top row functions
- a kind of automatic USER menu similar to the HP-41 USER menu
- no compatibility problems

Kind regards
JSBach
(11-09-2020 11:05 AM)JSBach Wrote: [ -> ]Please make an option to get another row of keys like the DM42.

Already implemented. You need a skin with these buttons.

https://thomasokken.com/free42/skins/
(11-09-2020 11:20 AM)SammysHP Wrote: [ -> ]Already implemented. You need a skin with these buttons.

https://thomasokken.com/free42/skins/

When you're using the DM42 skin (which I want to develop a fork of at some point when I have time), at least on Windows, you can also modify the keyboard shortcut layout so that the shortcuts for the row starting from ∑+ access these keys rather than the top row menu keys. Attached is a sample of the modified layout, but note that I made other modifications to the layout based on my own preferences as well (such as using "i" for inverse, "y" for x^y, "Shift+e" for e^x, space bar as an alias for enter, etc.). You need to either redo the top row modification to your own layout or undo my other modifications if you don't like them. This file is located at "%appdata%/free42".

By the way, rather than defaulting to Custom 1-6 when a menu isn't present, the top keys in Free42 (when equipped with the DM42 or similar skin) behave like the regular top row when a menu isn't present.
Hi,

thanks to both of you.

I tried the DM42 skin but it isn't quite what I wanted:

- The display is too big, especially for using on a phone.
- CUSTOM menu instead of simple duplication of the top row would be much nicer IMHO.

Kind regards
JSBach
In the layout you can define which function will be executed when the button is pressed. Not sure if it is possible to address the custom menu entries. But you can assign any function to a "physical" key.
(11-09-2020 01:02 PM)SammysHP Wrote: [ -> ]In the layout you can define which function will be executed when the button is pressed. Not sure if it is possible to address the custom menu entries. But you can assign any function to a "physical" key.

You technically could activate the custom keys using shifted menu keys by changing the key layout to:
Code:
Key: 1,41 <rect> <rect> <pt>
Key: 2,42 <rect> <rect> <pt>
...
and then defining the macros:
Code:
Macro: 41 28 30 1
Macro: 42 28 30 2
...

But honestly the custom menu was two keys away anyway. And you would lose access to any functions requiring shifted menu keys this way, such as lower case alphas (not sure if there are others). I suppose if you really wanted, you could add yet another extra row of keys in the skin just for the customs, and then you could access 2 levels of menus with this row between shifted and unshifted keys.

By the way, the physical DM42 uses the default menu actions (when menus aren't active) to access help, font size/type and volume functions, so even if Free42 implemented the change to the menu buttons as JSBach is suggesting, this change probably wouldn't be available on the DM42.
(11-09-2020 11:52 AM)firai Wrote: [ -> ]at least on Windows, you can also modify the keyboard shortcut layout so that the shortcuts for the row starting from ∑+ access these keys rather than the top row menu keys.

This is possible in the Mac and Linux versions as well, but note that when embedding keyboard mappings in the layout file, the mappings need to be tagged in order to be recognized:

Quote:You can also define PC keyboard mappings in the *.layout file. The syntax is identical to that of the keymap file, preceded by a tag that indicates the target platform: WinKey for Windows, MacKey for Mac, and GtkKey for Linux and other Unix-like environments. It is necessary to specify which platform each key mapping is for, since the key codes are platform-dependent.
If a layout file defines a mapping for a key that is also mapped in the keymap
file, the skin-specific mapping takes precedence.

https://thomasokken.com/free42/skins/README.html

For example, the layout of the 42ck skin uses this.
(11-09-2020 01:38 PM)firai Wrote: [ -> ]By the way, the physical DM42 uses the default menu actions (when menus aren't active) to access help, font size/type and volume functions, so even if Free42 implemented the change to the menu buttons as JSBach is suggesting, this change probably wouldn't be available on the DM42.

I have changed DM42 firmware to make the custom menu continously accessible - see https://forum.swissmicros.com/viewtopic.php?f=20&t=2517 - at least for me this is making a big difference in usability.
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