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Full Version: Why do French communities seem always a bit ahead in the sector of modern calcs?
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- Ti planet is leading about the nspire (ndless and so on)
- a lot of early good guides for the prime are in french.
- numworks is french.

It is just a random chance or is there a reason for this? I mean, the french communities seem the first to develop "deeply" on new calculators (kudos!).
One of the reasons why calculators with a CAS (TI-68k series since the late 1990s, Nspire since 2007 and to a lesser extent Prime since 2013) have always been more popular in France is the fact that unlike those of the USA and a number of other countries, the main standardized French test (the original Baccalauréat, nearly always shortened as "Bac" in everyday language) didn't have, and still doesn't have - even now that the education powers that be mandated an exam mode despite the obvious drawbacks - a stupid, counter-productive "no CAS allowed" restriction.

In the 2000s, there was a significant community of TI-68k developers on yAronet; before TI-Planet, yAronet was one of the two places where low-level, native code Nspire development started in 2009-2010, but people fled to greener pastures with better mood.
thanks for the info!
France also has a history of having pretty good people in the fields of math and computer science, so I guess this reflects that as well Smile

That said, regarding news on TI-Planet, for instance, we're "just" a bunch of calc addicts that spend several hours every day monitoring a whole lot of websites and other things (and being in contact with key people from various manufacturers helps: the trust relationships built along the years allows us to have access to early/beta products so that we can review them and publish news articles when they get released publicly, for instance)
Yeah, the non-university elite "classes préparatoires" system, known in everyday language as "prépa(s)", is good for teaching lots of pure, advanced maths on a very high-volume schedule.
It proves to be a first step towards fundamental research in mathematics. IIRC, people working in France (including foreigners) are consistently publishing >5% of fundamental math research papers, whereas France only houses a bit less than 1% of the world's inhabitants.
However, let's face it, apart from university / prépa math teachers and math researchers, a crushing majority of the math content taught in prépa is basically useless for... nearly any kind of day job, nearly all the time, even in fields such as computer science, where most engineers don't do math anymore to begin with, and even the more mathematically-oriented jobs, such as data scientist positions, use applied math (more in the area of statistics and probability theory) Smile
Back in the day, I got a fair sample of prépa math content through books suitable for such classes, following several special lessons taught by one of our high school math teacher to a subset of students who would enter such classes, or at least math / CS+math classes at university. Interesting, but... wow.

The NumWorks calculator doesn't have a CAS because its software is early beta and they focused on other things, and anyway, its hardware is much too weak for containing the full-blown port of giac which Bernard Parisse made work on the computer-based NumWorks calculator workalike which does not implement the real calculator model's memory limits. There's some room for improvement, though.
(09-15-2017 08:24 PM)Adriweb Wrote: [ -> ]France also has a history of having pretty good people in the fields of math and computer science, so I guess this reflects that as well Smile
That's true, (well according to some prizes at least). Nevertheless what does a community is a mass of people, not a good but limited elite. Therefore, somehow, there should be some societal reward to play around with calculators to have more early adopters in France rather than other places.

The point of exams allowing full CAS devices could be a reason. Since in US, for what I know, they are banned and the ti 84 is still pretty strong (see cemetech).
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