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41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
07-25-2016, 12:32 PM (This post was last modified: 07-25-2016 12:33 PM by Ángel Martin.)
Post: #1
41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
I may have missed them but it appears to be very few of these available in the user's contributed libraries. I can only trace down one in PPC V10N10P19 - quite a shortage in an otherwise rich contribution scene.

Probably the price of the device (plus PLOTTER Module) was an entry barrier for many, but even so you'd think other examples should be around.

As it happens I've just finished putting together a 16k module that has a collection from a book as interesting as little known: "Graphik mit dem hp-41" by Walter Prankel- ISBN: 978-3-528-04455-8 (Print) 978-3-663-06858-7 (Online)

The programs are very large and can be further optimized for a ROM format. I've taken a stab at it, separating some common sub-routines as auxiliary functions across several of them. I don't own a plotter so haven't been able to try the final result though...

There's still room left in the module for more programs - if anyone has a good example of the plotter capabilities I'll be glad to add it to the module. RAW files preferred!

Cheers,
'AM

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07-25-2016, 01:45 PM
Post: #2
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
Thank you very much Ángel, as usual.

Now I've to find a 7470... :-/

Greetings,
    Massimo

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07-25-2016, 04:30 PM
Post: #3
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 01:45 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  Thank you very much Ángel, as usual.

Now I've to find a 7470... Undecided

Mike (Stgt) was working on a virtual plotter: http://www.hpmuseum.org/forum/thread-221...l#pid19666

The nice thing about a virtual plotter is the pens don't dry out. Smile
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07-25-2016, 04:56 PM
Post: #4
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 04:30 PM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  
(07-25-2016 01:45 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  Thank you very much Ángel, as usual.

Now I've to find a 7470... :-/

Mike (Stgt) was working on a virtual plotter: http://www.hpmuseum.org/forum/thread-221...l#pid19666

Thank you, I forgot about it.

(07-25-2016 04:30 PM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  The nice thing about a virtual plotter is the pens don't dry out. :)

;)

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07-25-2016, 05:10 PM
Post: #5
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 12:32 PM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  I don't own a plotter so haven't been able to try the final result though...

(07-25-2016 04:30 PM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  The nice thing about a virtual plotter is the pens don't dry out. Smile

I can test them if you need, I have 2 working HP-7470A (1 x HP-IL & 1 x HP-IB) with plenty of plotter pens that need to be used if I do not want them to dry out Wink
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07-25-2016, 08:01 PM
Post: #6
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 12:32 PM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  I don't own a plotter so haven't been able to try the final result though...

If you can output the HPGL commands to a file available to a PC, some CAD and graphics programs should be able to open it and display your plot.

Or try something like HPGLViewer. I haven't tried this program - just found a reference to it.
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07-25-2016, 08:44 PM (This post was last modified: 09-08-2016 12:46 PM by Ángel Martin.)
Post: #7
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 05:10 PM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  
(07-25-2016 12:32 PM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  I don't own a plotter so haven't been able to try the final result though...

(07-25-2016 04:30 PM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  The nice thing about a virtual plotter is the pens don't dry out. Smile

I can test them if you need, I have 2 working HP-7470A (1 x HP-IL & 1 x HP-IB) with plenty of plotter pens that need to be used if I do not want them to dry out Wink

Here they are, but without the book it may be unclear how to use them - not as intuitive as one would like them to be...

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07-27-2016, 06:27 AM
Post: #8
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
I can understand that these are not so common. HP-IL and its devices were expensive back in the eighties. I could not afford anything like that. I recon that people who got HP-IL focused on getting the tape drive and printer, and neither were cheap. After paying for that I do not think many private people would go the plotter also.

Plotters were more likely bought by companies and the ones I saw during that era were hooked up to computers, not small HP-IL based devices.

In any case, it has always been an interesting device and sounds like a fun project to look into, should some time present itself in some future. In the mean time I like to gather some information, so just a few questions.

Is there a suitable font available that matches the one used by 7470?

Are there any "useful" applications for it, or perhaps a better phrase is "killer apps"? Smile
(and I do not count making bar codes as a killer app today)
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07-27-2016, 03:34 PM
Post: #9
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-27-2016 09:23 AM)Mike (Stgt) Wrote:  
(07-27-2016 06:27 AM)hth Wrote:  ... (and I do not count making bar codes as a killer app today)

As we deal here with obsolete hardware that made history we also mind old software. So all ancient killer applications could be well known today. When I look back I remember only two outstanding "killer apps" worth to mention, one is - no: was! - >>Mollier's h,X-Program for Water-Humidified Air<< I did more than 30 years ago on the HP-41, the other one was Mind Mapping on HP200LX. In addition I'd like to emphasise on the emulators and simulations of the old junk that allows me to play with old stuff on new machinery - this enables me to link an emulated HP-71B per virtual IL to z/VM running under Hercules with other simulated IL devices all on the same laptop.

So, what would be in your opinion a today's killer app?

Ciao.....Mike

BTW: all this virtualisation gives me access to 'toys' I could never afford as real HW. Emulators ar the poor man's hardware, what brings some kind of democratisation: everybody may go for his own "killer app".

I remember back then that a killer app was weather data plotting used for forecasts, this was at an airport. It plotted on already printed maps, probably about DIN A2 sized plotters.

Business graphics was also used. I came to that place later, the HP plotter had been phased out and put in the storage, later to be thrown. I tried to stop it, but could not take the plotter, it was too big. (It did not have HP-IL, I checked carefully.)

Barcodes was kind of promoted back then and the 7470 definitely should have a better job compared to most other printers around that era. Today we have postscript printers, so I see that as a bit obsolete.

Today I guess that if it would be possible to pull data from internet, weather data and flight information (I have no idea if such feeds are available) pops into my mind now, it could serve as a basis for something. An emulator could plot on a background map image, similiar to back then. Such feeds (if available) could perhaps be turned into an HP-IL device in a virtualization environment.

It does not have to be useful, but it does not hurt as it may provide inspiration to actually make progress.

Still looking for a font, it would make things easier I think... Do you use one, or do you draw it manually? I tried to google and there are good hits, but I have no idea how the actual 7470 characters look. I saw some pictures of them 30 years ago, but I cannot use that dusty memory picture to judge alternatives..
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07-27-2016, 06:19 PM
Post: #10
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-27-2016 03:34 PM)hth Wrote:  Still looking for a font, it would make things easier I think... Do you use one, or do you draw it manually? I tried to google and there are good hits, but I have no idea how the actual 7470 characters look. I saw some pictures of them 30 years ago, but I cannot use that dusty memory picture to judge alternatives..

Maybe this could be of help (p. 5-2)

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07-27-2016, 06:59 PM
Post: #11
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-27-2016 06:19 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  Maybe this could be of help (p. 5-2)

Yes, thank you! A quick initial look around for fonts gave nothing that looked the same, but maybe that is not so totally important, just find something that gives the right feeling.
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07-27-2016, 07:25 PM
Post: #12
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-27-2016 06:59 PM)hth Wrote:  
(07-27-2016 06:19 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  Maybe this could be of help (p. 5-2)

Yes, thank you! A quick initial look around for fonts gave nothing that looked the same, but maybe that is not so totally important, just find something that gives the right feeling.

Something like this?
I didn't check for 1 to 1 compatibility, just a look alike, maybe.

Greetings,
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07-28-2016, 07:32 AM
Post: #13
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
... if you do a simple search
Google Search "HPGL font"
you will find a Unix tool with source code which includes several remade fonts. I think in the HPGL section the "stick" font is close to the original.
However it is not in any modern format like TrueType or so, but very useable for direct embedding into programs.
When I looked for such fonts in the past I found a few more. Just look for "HPGL emulator", "HPGL font" and similar key words.
There is no need to create a new one - it could be useful to create a TrueType version, though.
Martin
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07-29-2016, 06:29 AM
Post: #14
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-25-2016 08:44 PM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  Here they are, but without the book it may be unclear how to use them - not as intuitive as one would like them to be...

You can download the book (98 MB PDF). For personal or educational use only ... ;-)
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07-29-2016, 10:07 AM
Post: #15
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(07-29-2016 06:29 AM)Jurgen Keller Wrote:  
(07-25-2016 08:44 PM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  Here they are, but without the book it may be unclear how to use them - not as intuitive as one would like them to be...

You can download the book (98 MB PDF). For personal or educational use only ... ;-)

GREAT!

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08-05-2016, 09:55 PM
Post: #16
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
Hello Angel,
Back to grafiks module plotter tests ...
I have converted the GRAFIKS.MOD into ROM files with MDLD2000 v1.70.
Then I have programmed a ClonixD module with the following configuration
Page 8 : -GRAFIK 1/2
Page 9 : -GRAFIK #2
Page A : -GRAFIK 3/4
Page B : -GRAFIK #4
I have tried into several HP-41 (CL & CX) and they either lock the machine or make it do weird things.
Is my configuration correct ?
Do the module need a page 4 library ?
Best regards,
Sylvain
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08-06-2016, 05:21 AM (This post was last modified: 08-06-2016 07:16 AM by Ángel Martin.)
Post: #17
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(08-05-2016 09:55 PM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  Hello Angel,
Back to grafiks module plotter tests ...
I have converted the GRAFIKS.MOD into ROM files with MDLD2000 v1.70.
Then I have programmed a ClonixD module with the following configuration
Page 8 : -GRAFIK 1/2
Page 9 : -GRAFIK #2
Page A : -GRAFIK 3/4
Page B : -GRAFIK #4
I have tried into several HP-41 (CL & CX) and they either lock the machine or make it do weird things.
Is my configuration correct ?
Do the module need a page 4 library ?
Best regards,
Sylvain


Hi Sylvain, your configuration is correct and no, there's no need for Library#4 or any other dependency so it should work just fine... (famous last words).

Does the lockup happen when you turn the machine on, or is it related to the execution of the programs? If it's on CALC_ON it should be easier to troubleshoot: none of those ROM images have any CALC_ON event, thus it should come from another reason... you can check with an HEX editor that there's nothing in the polling points, from pFF4 to pFFA.

Try plugging in only one of those, either 1/2 or 3/4, with the corresponding second page. They are completely independent. Is the problem still there?

I assume the lockup doesn't occur without the clonix plugged in, so the rest of the system works fine...

Let us know what you find out...

PS. I've sent you the four ROM images via email - maybe this helps. Note there are a couple of new functions in the first FAT, under -PPC PLOT header.

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08-06-2016, 03:08 PM
Post: #18
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(08-06-2016 05:21 AM)Ángel Martin Wrote:  Hi Sylvain, your configuration is correct and no, there's no need for Library#4 or any other dependency so it should work just fine... (famous last words).

Let us know what you find out...

PS. I've sent you the four ROM images via email - maybe this helps. Note there are a couple of new functions in the first FAT, under -PPC PLOT header.

Hello Angel,

I have received the email, thank you!

ClonixConfig has the issue that it will tell you everything is fine even though the ROM compilation failed (generated size images has 0 bytes).
It was my fault, I should have checked it, I did not, I totally forgot and I have been bitten (again), the Clonix-D module is now working correctly.

Testing with the plotter will start tomorrow.

Best regards,

Sylvain
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08-09-2016, 06:36 PM
Post: #19
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
Hello Angel,

A small update ...

I am trying the example of page 33 of the German Manual from Jurgen.
The program LINH give me an "PL: RANGE ERR" error on line 425 when the LIMIT function is called.
My next step is to print the program and compare it to the manual (page 204).

My vintage test setup is:
HP-41C + QUAD + Port-X-Tender [GRAFIK (on Clonix-D) + PLOTTER + TIME + HP-IL] + 7470A opt 003 + 82162A

Sylvain
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08-09-2016, 07:33 PM
Post: #20
RE: 41 Programs for 7470 Plotter - Why so few?
(08-09-2016 06:36 PM)Sylvain Cote Wrote:  The program LINH give me an "PL: RANGE ERR" error on line 425 when the LIMIT function is called.

Sylvain, are you sure you don't have other HP-IL devices in the loop? Try with the plotter alone.
There is a "well-known" bug of the Plotter module that can cause this effect, see the addendum in the manual on TOS for instance.

Angel,
If by chance you know a fix for this bug... I always wanted to have it fixed. I suspect it is related to the HP-IL.

J-F
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