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How and why do you use your HP calc?
09-14-2017, 10:05 PM (This post was last modified: 09-14-2017 10:08 PM by Neve.)
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RE: How and why do you use your HP calc?
(09-14-2017 09:14 PM)David Hayden Wrote:  My first introduction to programmable calculators was around 1976 with a TI SR-52? Then I saw my brother's HP-25 and I was hooked. I convinced my dad to buy me a 29C for high school. A couple years later I bought a 41C. I clearly remember sitting down with the manual the day that I got it and reading it cover to cover, working through each example.

It's no exaggeration to say that calculators led to my career as a programmer.

In 1982(?) I traded in the 41C for a CV. Once I had the 41-CV I stopped paying attention to what was happening in the world of calculators. The 41CV met all my needs in glorious fashion. I vaguely recall hearing that someone had hacked the 41C to expose hidden instructions (aka synthetic programming) and I remember thinking that it was a really bad idea because what if HP changed the hardware or decode logic. Note to self: don't ever take your own advice.

Anyway the 41CV sat in my desk and I continued to use it whenever I needed a calculator - perhaps once every week or two. That was my only calculator (along with card reader, printer and math pac) for more than 20 years.

Then in 2007(?) my daughter's school said that she needed something called a "graphing calculator" from TI. I went off and bought it. After looking at it for a little bit, I thought "hey, I wonder what HP has been up to in the calculator business." I looked on amazon, found that they were still making calculators. Appreciating my salary in comparison to finances of a struggling student, I plunked down the money for the top-of-the-line model: a 50g.

I have to admit that my initial experience with the 50g was not a happy one. I think I even wrote a long post here about it from the perspective of an enthusiast who was non-the-less completely new to RPL and the 48/49/50 series. But I persevered and pretty soon the 50g was my go-to calculator.

Then I made the mistake of discovering the HHC conference. My first one was 2009 or 2010. I was instantly hooked. I now own a 12C, 15C+ 15C-LE, 2 WP-34s, Both versions of the 48gii, a 48SX, 48GX, 28s, 30b, 20b, 2x 39gii, 39g, 40g, Prime, and probably others that I can't recall. They are scattered around my office, home desk and bedside table. I frequently grab one to do some calculation or play with some command I've just learned. My favorites are the wp-34s, 50g and prime. To me, those the top of the line in RPN, RPL, and modern calculators.

I also started as a software and system engineer. And like you bought a 50g a couple of years back along a HP Prime. I returned the latter after a week playing with it. I was pretty disappointed with the non-RPN CAS. To me an HP is RPN or it's not an HP. I could do with the 50g cause at least you can choose between both modes. Not on the Prime (at least not for the CAS). Plus having to learn not one, but 2 programming languages put me off. I understand HP wanted to evolve and created RPL for the 50g and that line, but yet again another one for the Prime? Nope, not for me... And it's too classroom oriented. It's more of a high-end toy to me. No offense. It makes programming simple tasks complicated, I'd rather use my 41. I admit that it is a very nice looking machine, though. As I said in another post, it could have been a true replacement for the 41 line. HP decided otherwise...

Engineer & Senior IT Executive
Tall-Key HP41CL, CV, CX, 82162A Printer, 82143A Printer, 82160A HP-IL, 2 Card-Readers, Modules, Wand, HP50g.
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RE: How and why do you use your HP calc? - Neve - 09-14-2017 10:05 PM



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