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The calculator I always wanted
10-15-2019, 10:18 PM (This post was last modified: 10-15-2019 10:21 PM by cdmackay.)
Post: #21
RE: The calculator I always wanted
Couple of minor points, not really relevant for your release, but in general, please…

- you might consider please relabelling the power key ^ to something like yx? it took me ages to find it Smile

- The R↓ key seems to me to behave more like x⇔y, i.e. it swaps the bottom 2 levels of the stack. Whereas I'd expect R↓ to roll down the entire stack. Or is there only 2 levels? In any case, as it is now, the shifted R↑ would seem to be redundant, since it does the same as R↓. Or am I missing something?

EDIT I now see this is addressed here. But a manual/note covering these points would be very useful please Smile

- Is there a manual, or key help etc?

thanks again!

Cambridge, UK
41CL/DM41X 12/15C/16C DM15/16 71B 17B/BII/bII+ 28S 42S/DM42 32SII 48GX 50g 35s 30b/WP34S Prime G2
& Casios, Rockwell 18R :)
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10-15-2019, 10:24 PM
Post: #22
RE: The calculator I always wanted
And something else, that might affect your release: on my Note 10+, the prompt box (e.g. simplify) is under the camera cutout, and the text is slightly clipped by it. move it a bit lower, perhaps?

Cambridge, UK
41CL/DM41X 12/15C/16C DM15/16 71B 17B/BII/bII+ 28S 42S/DM42 32SII 48GX 50g 35s 30b/WP34S Prime G2
& Casios, Rockwell 18R :)
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10-16-2019, 12:17 AM
Post: #23
RE: The calculator I always wanted
The selection-based roll is obviously confusing a lot of people. I'll have to do something here. I think it works well once you understand it; do you agree? i.e. is the solution to better explain it, or should I change the interaction model?

I used to have a yx button instead of ^. I couldn't decide whether it should use an italic serif font like all other math, or bold sans like all the other large buttons. Both looked awkward.

Sorry, I don't have a manual yet. It's on my to-do list.

Good catch on the algebra buttons going behind the camera cutout. I'll bet that's horrible on large notch phones like the Pixel 3.
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10-16-2019, 11:33 AM
Post: #24
RE: The calculator I always wanted
(10-16-2019 12:17 AM)vanLudwig Wrote:  The selection-based roll is obviously confusing a lot of people. I'll have to do something here. I think it works well once you understand it; do you agree? i.e. is the solution to better explain it, or should I change the interaction model?

Agreed, it's very nice now I know how it works. Yes, better (or simply more visible) explanation would be fine, I think. Perhaps a few fundamental points — like how selection changes behaviour — would be good somewhere like the Play Store description, or a very simple text in-calc help page?

Quote:I used to have a yx button instead of ^. I couldn't decide whether it should use an italic serif font like all other math, or bold sans like all the other large buttons. Both looked awkward.

I'm not good at this GUI stuff, so I'll leave that to you. Just, for me, I didn't immediately equate ^ with the power operator, since I've never seen it marked that way on a calculator. Could be just me that's being slow Smile

thanks again, overall I'm hugely impressed!

Cambridge, UK
41CL/DM41X 12/15C/16C DM15/16 71B 17B/BII/bII+ 28S 42S/DM42 32SII 48GX 50g 35s 30b/WP34S Prime G2
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10-20-2019, 11:36 PM
Post: #25
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I wrote a chapter of documentation on using the f and := buttons. This is an advanced topic; it definitely won't be the starting chapter of the completed docs, but I think it is probably the most confusing functionality in the app.


Attached File(s)
.pdf  DefiningAndUsingFunctions.pdf (Size: 980.62 KB / Downloads: 15)
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10-31-2019, 03:36 PM
Post: #26
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I just pushed out BETA 4. I'm hoping this is the final BETA.
  • Use the ƒ tool to apply function heads to arbitrary parameters
  • Added popup help for selection-based RPN operations
  • Fixed algebra popup menu going behind camera cutouts
  • Fixed error saving floating-point numbers during application exit
  • Human-translated dialogs to German (thanks Demosthenes)

RPN example of new ƒ capabilities:
  • CATALOG -> Constants -> Function Heads -> D-G -> EasterSunday
  • Type 2019 on the console
  • Select EasterSunday on the stack and 3rd -> ƒ
  • Result: {2019, 4, 21}

WYSIWYG example of new ƒ capabilities:
  • CATALOG -> Constants -> Function Heads -> D-G -> EasterSunday
  • 3rd -> ƒ
  • Type 2019 and ENTER
  • Result: {2019, 4, 21}

You need to know the expected parameters in order to use function heads this way; Acron Calculator doesn't do any parameter verification. You can usually look them up on reference.wolfram.com. No guarantees that Symja actually supports all these functions, though.
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10-31-2019, 07:57 PM
Post: #27
RE: The calculator I always wanted
(10-31-2019 03:36 PM)vanLudwig Wrote:  You need to know the expected parameters in order to use function heads this way; Acron Calculator doesn't do any parameter verification. You can usually look them up on reference.wolfram.com. No guarantees that Symja actually supports all these functions, though.

So, you need to go to Wolfram to get the proper syntax to then enter the problem on the calculator app?

Maybe I've missed something basic, but why wouldn't you just solve the problem while you're at Wolfram?

Not trying to be a PITA, just curious why that would make sense?

--Bob Prosperi
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10-31-2019, 08:34 PM
Post: #28
RE: The calculator I always wanted
(10-31-2019 07:57 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  
(10-31-2019 03:36 PM)vanLudwig Wrote:  You need to know the expected parameters in order to use function heads this way; Acron Calculator doesn't do any parameter verification. You can usually look them up on reference.wolfram.com. No guarantees that Symja actually supports all these functions, though.

So, you need to go to Wolfram to get the proper syntax to then enter the problem on the calculator app?

Maybe I've missed something basic, but why wouldn't you just solve the problem while you're at Wolfram?

Not trying to be a PITA, just curious why that would make sense?

Have you ever used the Wolfram phone app? It's powerful, but awful to use. If it had a nice interface like Acron Calculator, I never would have bothered.

I try to balance making the the most useful functions as easy to use as possible, while giving you some route to the more obscure functions. So, I expect users will mostly use functions on the calculator buttons (maximum of two button presses away). The most recently used catalog functions are listed at the top (also two button presses away). If you have to look through the catalog for a function, this is 3-5 button presses away. Using the function heads is ~8 button presses away, so I don't anticipate people using them much. If there's an outcry for a specific function, I'll add it to the catalog. I'd just hate for anyone to be in the middle of a calculation using Acron Calculator, then have to abandon that and switch to Wolfram because I'm missing some weird function. And, I'm assuming if they were considering switching over to Wolfram for that weird function, they already know how to use it.
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10-31-2019, 09:47 PM
Post: #29
RE: The calculator I always wanted
(10-31-2019 08:34 PM)vanLudwig Wrote:  Have you ever used the Wolfram phone app? It's powerful, but awful to use. If it had a nice interface like Acron Calculator, I never would have bothered.

Aha, that's what I didn't get! I am NOT very familiar with the Wolfram phone app, and when I saw the address 'reference.wolfram.com' I thought this was suggesting to use a PC browser to go there, hence my question - if you need to use a PC to get the syntax, then you may as well just keep using the PC. I do have Wolfram on my Android phone, I'll check it out to see what it's like, I've not used it since installing it.

Though I've not been following the new Beta release of of Acron (I honestly don't even understand what many of it's new features are for - my computing needs are somewhat anemic compared to those), I do use the 'old' style Acron and agree it's efficient and clear / easy to use.

Thanks for clarifying this for me (and hopefully others as well).

--Bob Prosperi
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11-09-2019, 08:38 PM
Post: #30
RE: The calculator I always wanted
By popular demand, here's some documentation on what each of the calculator buttons does.


Attached File(s)
.pdf  AcronHelp.pdf (Size: 1.88 MB / Downloads: 31)
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11-11-2019, 02:20 PM
Post: #31
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I pushed out RC1 to beta testers. I expect this to be the build that will be released to the public; if you encounter any problems, I need to know ASAP.

Unlike the BETAs, this build has licensing enforced. When the app starts up, you will be prompted to begin a free trial of the monthly service, or purchase a lifetime subscription. For everyone that has been helping me beta test, send me a private message and I will give you a code for a free lifetime subscription.
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11-14-2019, 02:37 PM (This post was last modified: 11-20-2019 07:45 PM by vanLudwig.)
Post: #32
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I made RC1 the official v1.0 public release, and it is now available to everyone via the Play Store. Thank you everyone for the feedback, testing, and translation.
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11-14-2019, 02:48 PM
Post: #33
RE: The calculator I always wanted
thank you for the help file. Will try it more when I get a minute free…

Cambridge, UK
41CL/DM41X 12/15C/16C DM15/16 71B 17B/BII/bII+ 28S 42S/DM42 32SII 48GX 50g 35s 30b/WP34S Prime G2
& Casios, Rockwell 18R :)
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03-21-2020, 05:19 PM
Post: #34
RE: The calculator I always wanted
For those of you that are still signed up as beta testers, I pushed out RC1 of version 1.1.0 today. The new version adds a free Variable Editor app to the Acron Store that you can use to create new custom variables. Once the variables have been created, use STO/RCL/DEL + '...' to use them. When creating variables, you can customize their font and add leading and trailing subscripts and superscripts. You can use all unicode characters (although you may have to copy/paste them from another source if your keyboard can't type them). Let me know if you see any problems; otherwise I'll probably release to the public in a few days.
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04-13-2020, 09:37 PM
Post: #35
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I released a beta with a new equation solver tool on 2nd -> eq. It's a handy tool for equations with a lot of variables where you need to solve for a single unknown (such as the Ideal Gas Law or Law of Cosines). There's a brief tutorial here. If no one finds any problems with the beta, it will probably be released to the public later this week.
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03-14-2021, 06:29 AM
Post: #36
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I took a pretty long break from Acron Calculator development while I trained my new puppy, but he's finally calmed down enough that I can resume.

I released version 1.3 to BETA today. It now has unit conversion functions available on the 2nd and 3rd of the right cursor key. The new functionality doesn't just do baked conversions like ft => m or kg => lb; it understands the units and how to combine them. So, for instance, it can tell you how long it will take a pump with a flow rate of 100 gallons per minute to drain a 5 acre lake 1 inch.
\[\frac{5\cdot \text{acre}\cdot 1\cdot \text{in}}{100\cdot\frac{\text{gal}}{\text{min}}}\rightarrow \text{h}\]
You can also access the same units in the equation solver tool. This comes in really handy for physics or chemistry equations like PV=nRT.

I went to excruciating lengths to find the perfect (i.e. rational) definitions of units so Acron won't introduce any round-off error into your calculations. This can result in getting some pretty hideous fractional answers if you ask perfect number questions, so I suggest introducing decimals in your questions or using the 3rd -> ENTER for an approximate answer.

Version 1.3 will probably be in BETA for at least a week while I send the new UI off to be localized. Please let me know if you run into any problems so I can get them fixed before final release.

BTW: it takes 792/35 hours to drain the lake 1 inch (about 22:37:43.86).
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03-14-2021, 07:05 PM
Post: #37
RE: The calculator I always wanted
I should have also mentioned that version 1.3 uses the latest version of the Symja engine. So while I didn't specifically make any improvements to the core functionality in Acron Calculator this release, you will probably find that it gives better answers to a lot of questions due to the Symja update.
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03-14-2021, 08:22 PM
Post: #38
RE: The calculator I always wanted
Having units will be very useful.

Is there a way to be able to build units that I need?

I use micrograms per square decimeters in my work. That is not there (not surprising), but not even micrograms or decimeters. The Prime has the prefixes supplied as essentially separate units so you can build any SI combined unit.

In your example you have gallons per minute. Is that just by dividing 1 gallon by 1 minute then multiplying by 100?

A function to gather the units could be helpful. Is this part of the Symja engine? Maybe a set of functions could be enabled in the catalog if they already have some of this.
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03-14-2021, 08:45 PM
Post: #39
RE: The calculator I always wanted
thank you!

Cambridge, UK
41CL/DM41X 12/15C/16C DM15/16 71B 17B/BII/bII+ 28S 42S/DM42 32SII 48GX 50g 35s 30b/WP34S Prime G2
& Casios, Rockwell 18R :)
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03-14-2021, 09:42 PM
Post: #40
RE: The calculator I always wanted
(03-14-2021 08:22 PM)john gustaf stebbins Wrote:  Having units will be very useful.

Is there a way to be able to build units that I need?

I use micrograms per square decimeters in my work. That is not there (not surprising), but not even micrograms or decimeters. The Prime has the prefixes supplied as essentially separate units so you can build any SI combined unit.

In your example you have gallons per minute. Is that just by dividing 1 gallon by 1 minute then multiplying by 100?

A function to gather the units could be helpful. Is this part of the Symja engine? Maybe a set of functions could be enabled in the catalog if they already have some of this.

Sorry, I really wanted to give the ability to define your own units, but I haven't found a way to do it. I added about half these units to Symja myself, and I had to rebuild the entire library every time. They are basically hard-coded in. I did consider doing something where you could select a base unit and then apply a prefix to it, but that would be UI candy on my part; Symja would have to have every combination of base unit and prefix hard-coded in.

Yes, in my example, you just multiply 100 by 1 gallon / 1 minute. I don't have a gallon/minute combination unit. The combination units I do have (like foot-pounds) just execute several keystrokes for you on the base units (i.e. create a foot constant, create a pounds constant, and multiply them together).

I'm not sure if I understand your comment about gathering units. I'm guessing you mean that 8 ft * 3 in should either return 2 ft^2 or 288 in^2, but not 24 in*ft. If so, that is a limitation of the Symja engine; it basically relies on you doing a unit convert at the end to figure out how to optimize things.
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