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why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
05-03-2014, 02:00 AM
Post: #1
why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
Hi. I read that the Prime has two separate modes.

I want to ask, can you program the RPN side?

To contrast, on the iPad / iPhone I have the superb app called i41CX+ and I can create hybrid apps that run off the calculator, and also call up CAS routines (programmed in the REDUCE language) and return variables that I can then put back into the registers.

I assume there is no such integration on the Prime, but I still want to know if at least you can program in RPN mode and maybe even ignore the CAS side until there is integration developed (or hacked).

Thanks.
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05-03-2014, 07:34 AM
Post: #2
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
To contrast, TI has 2 completelly separate calculators Big Grin

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05-03-2014, 08:08 AM
Post: #3
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
(05-03-2014 02:00 AM)lemontea Wrote:  I want to ask, can you program the RPN side?

FACT: Prime is programmable (HP PPL), and you can call your programs when you are in RPN mode, but HP PPL is variable oriented, not stack oriented, and there are no programmable stack commands in HP PPL. You can't even explode a list onto the stack. RPN mode is intended to be merely an "Entry Mode" for keyboard calculations for those who prefer it over algebraic syntax.

OPINION: If you want and/or need to program in RPN, the Prime is not for you. However, if you only need RPN for keyboard calculations (which is where RPN really shines), and can program the Prime in PPL (which is MUCH easier than programming in RPN!), then Prime MIGHT be a good match for you.

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-Joe-
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05-03-2014, 10:23 AM (This post was last modified: 05-03-2014 10:30 AM by jebem.)
Post: #4
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
(05-03-2014 07:34 AM)eried Wrote:  To contrast, TI has 2 completelly separate calculators Big Grin

That's why I love the HP-Prime: two in one, to start with! Smile

And many thanks, Joe, for sharing your knowledge here.
So, in the end I have got three calculators in one package:
- Home mode with RPN entry mode for fast manual calculations;
- Home mode with Algebraic/Text book for powerful manual and programming duties;
- CAS mode for advanced XCAS symbolic calculus.

Jose Mesquita
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05-04-2014, 02:05 AM
Post: #5
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
(05-03-2014 08:08 AM)Joe Horn Wrote:  OPINION: If you want and/or need to program in RPN, the Prime is not for you. However, if you only need RPN for keyboard calculations (which is where RPN really shines), and can program the Prime in PPL (which is MUCH easier than programming in RPN!), then Prime MIGHT be a good match for you.

Thanks... Joe you are almost on the verge of convincing me to get the Prime... almost, not just quite yet... :-)
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05-04-2014, 09:23 AM
Post: #6
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
While you are considering if purchasing another calculator makes sense for you, perhaps considering how much you will use a *portable* calculating device will help.

Will you actually be using a calculator when a computer is readily at hand? If so, maybe using a spreadsheet will suffice. If you feel you want to stay in a calculator environment, perhaps the emulator(s) would serve your needs.

Sure, there is the pride of ownership, which somehow makes having a new device worthwhile, in spite of the practical matter that perhaps all it will be used for is giving you yet another battery to keep charged, and draining a few more milliwatts from your nearly full, ac power surge-protected, multi-outlet device.

There are things that don't work as expected, and likely frustration trying to remember how to do things you once knew how to do, these reasons might help stimulate you to purchase another calculator. The emulator can help you capture the moment, in the meantime.

You likely have a lot of free desk space, perhaps next your coffee cup or snack tray. It's possible you can keep the calculator and it's USB / charging cable next to or along side of those. They won't interfere with each other, very often.

Fortunately, there are online reference manuals around. Oftentimes, it's handy to print out certain frequently referred parts, or even the entire manual(s). Kept close by, you can access them as you put your coffee cup down. Sequences were recently discussed here regarding the hp Prime, by the way, and it's moments like this that gives striking definition to that concept.

Hopefully, this is of value in your decision making. Like Joe, perhaps others will share additional insight.

-Dale-
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05-05-2014, 12:00 AM
Post: #7
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
Dale, what you say is very true. I do agree a large part has to do with simply the "fun" of having a new "toy" around. But more and more I see that when the need strikes to perform a computation, it's more handy to have a handy device around than to go to the computer and then spend perhaps up to a minute loading the spreadsheet, loading the files, etc. And the calculator itself has an integral numeric keypad.

Also, regarding desk space, unfortunately that is at a premium for me, haha, so actually it takes up more space to have a laptop on my desk than a calculator.
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05-05-2014, 10:39 AM
Post: #8
RE: why prime has two modes? RPN and CAS?
Somehow, I picture you at the desk, laptop at the ready, and yet a calculator nearby. Nature abhors an uncluttered desk, paraphrasing an old adage.

If you were to picture me on the other hand, well ... same thing. Stuff all over the place, and loving the hp Prime, always at hand!

-Dale-
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