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Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
06-06-2022, 10:30 PM
Post: #1
Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
The DM32 and the discussion caused me to think.

I work in front of a computer or two. If a calculation requires programming I generally do it in the computer, in the language that I'm already working in. If I'm looking for a simple unit conversion I have a good utility for that in the computer and if it is something more complicated involving units I most definitely want RPL. But rather often I want a really simple calculator, separate from the computer. Scientific but without all the advanced stuff. And we were discussing menus and busy faceplates and the problem that we just don't remember where everything is... so I decided to do an experiment.

How well does all the basic scientific functionality fit on the relatively large number of keys on the DM portrait platform - with no shifts and no menus (other than display and modes)? Result: it fits very well, for me at least, that never makes use of the % and %change functionality. Take a look at the attached pdf and tell me what you think.

.pdf  simple-RPN-calc-on-DM-platform.pdf (Size: 66.8 KB / Downloads: 171)

I realize that it is somewhat silly to use such a powerful platform for a calculator this simple, and that it won't actually be easy to use unless we can at some point maybe get this hardware with mostly blank keys. But, this being a non-programmable calculator, it may actually be easy enough to create that I might go ahead and do it anyway at some point.

I also had another insight: the menus on the 32s ii are really fast and easy due to 1) no submenus and 2) no more than 6 items, therefore no scrolling of menus. Why not base the entire calculator around that? I'm in the process of developing that idea, it could include a whole lot more functions while still making it really easy to find everything.

Or maybe I'm just crazy right now.
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06-07-2022, 12:21 AM
Post: #2
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
I can understand that very well.
Compare the keyboard of the WP-31S with the cluttered one of the WP-34S.
[Image: 31s-angle-medium.jpg]
[Image: 34s-angle-medium.jpg]
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06-07-2022, 05:12 AM
Post: #3
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
(06-06-2022 10:30 PM)LinusSch Wrote:  The DM32 and the discussion caused me to think.

I work in front of a computer or two. If a calculation requires programming I generally do it in the computer, in the language that I'm already working in. If I'm looking for a simple unit conversion I have a good utility for that in the computer and if it is something more complicated involving units I most definitely want RPL. But rather often I want a really simple calculator, separate from the computer. Scientific but without all the advanced stuff. And we were discussing menus and busy faceplates and the problem that we just don't remember where everything is... so I decided to do an experiment.

How well does all the basic scientific functionality fit on the relatively large number of keys on the DM portrait platform - with no shifts and no menus (other than display and modes)? Result: it fits very well, for me at least, that never makes use of the % and %change functionality. Take a look at the attached pdf and tell me what you think.


I realize that it is somewhat silly to use such a powerful platform for a calculator this simple, and that it won't actually be easy to use unless we can at some point maybe get this hardware with mostly blank keys. But, this being a non-programmable calculator, it may actually be easy enough to create that I might go ahead and do it anyway at some point.

I also had another insight: the menus on the 32s ii are really fast and easy due to 1) no submenus and 2) no more than 6 items, therefore no scrolling of menus. Why not base the entire calculator around that? I'm in the process of developing that idea, it could include a whole lot more functions while still making it really easy to find everything.

Or maybe I'm just crazy right now.

I like keyboard 2 and it's very simple and meets the need. If you want, you could add a new row to include hyperbolic functions, conversions (but that would break the no-menu rule), combination, permutation.
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06-07-2022, 07:03 AM (This post was last modified: 06-07-2022 07:06 AM by Marco Polo.)
Post: #4
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
What about a DM32 based on HP32s (not II)?
Or, even, the port of WP31s to DM platform
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06-07-2022, 07:54 AM (This post was last modified: 06-07-2022 08:06 AM by Peet.)
Post: #5
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
Such a simple calculator is definitely missing on the market, a kind of RPN calculator of the TI-30 class or a modern edition of the classic HP-45.
Somehow, however, I can't quite imagine the success of such a calculator on a $200 platform.
But for $20 or less, I think that RPN can find many new friends with such a calculator.

My calculators - former: CBM PR100, HP41CV, HP11C, HP28S - current: HP48G, HP35S, Prime, DM41X, DM42
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06-07-2022, 08:46 AM
Post: #6
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
The WP31s is the closest that I know of and it gets the primary keys right, IMHO. It could serve my needs, if it got ported to the DM platform and modified to show the full 4-level stack always, dedicating the top row and a bottom slice of the screen to the menus so that they don't interfere. But that would still be pretty far from what I'm envisioning here.

Like Peet says, more like the 45 or a TI-30 class. Actually simple, not even programmable. Showing all 4 levels of the stack is important to me and I've found it important when trying to explain RPN to someone that is not used to it. With that and a low price then yes it might be what RPN needs to find new users, but manufacturing stuff for a low price is something none of us is set up to do. AFAIK.

I personally have no interest in hyperbolics, despite studying at the university for a decade I still have never used them and don't even know what they are. Also no interest in conversions since I have other tools for that (but my menu-based still cooking idea does include them because it can do so in a simple manner).

Combinations and permutations would make sense to include. Modes could be a single menu with six items: degrees, radians, fix, sci, eng, all. On/off could be not a key, there is nothing to cancel out of here... but I do wish for an undo.

But I'm busy today, no time for this right now.
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08-13-2022, 10:04 PM
Post: #7
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
I like this idea of this. It could be as simple as using a DM42 with free42, but hooking up only those particular functions to the keys. And changing the keys and faceplate I guess. But wouldn't have thought you'd need to reinvent the wheel (the wheel being free42 I guess!).

It would be nice to have a simple calculator for children to learn on, and, as you say, I don't turn to a calculator for matrix, complex, probability, statistics, solving equations. I suppose I do find the odd program/equation useful for often-used formulae. You could always sneak in a custom menu and that way everyone's extra needs are met.

The downside is just that it will cost more than a DM42.
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08-17-2022, 07:56 AM
Post: #8
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
The 34S was (is) a machine with a lot of power, and not so many keys.
By the time you include yellow F-, blue G-, and green H- function labels, you had a mess. Throw in some alphanumerics to really mess it up!

I'd happily take more keys, if it means less functions per key. I look at my typing keyboard, and think of adding stencils to the front of keycaps in order to work as a calculator. Just eliminating the green H- functions from the 34S, and having those options on new keycaps, would go a long way toward cleaning up the clutter.

People say I'm a dreamer.
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08-17-2022, 08:59 AM
Post: #9
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
(08-17-2022 07:56 AM)sa-penguin Wrote:  The 34S was (is) a machine with a lot of power, and not so many keys.
By the time you include yellow F-, blue G-, and green H- function labels, you had a mess. Throw in some alphanumerics to really mess it up!

I'd happily take more keys, if it means less functions per key. I look at my typing keyboard, and think of adding stencils to the front of keycaps in order to work as a calculator. Just eliminating the green H- functions from the 34S, and having those options on new keycaps, would go a long way toward cleaning up the clutter.

People say I'm a dreamer.

Maybe what you need is just a WP31S.
[Image: 15290265472_d842be2910_b.jpg]

Greetings,
    Massimo

-+×÷ ↔ left is right and right is wrong
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08-18-2022, 10:45 PM
Post: #10
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
That does look very nice. I see H.MS and convert too. But where is roll down?
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08-19-2022, 11:03 AM
Post: #11
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
Hello!

(08-18-2022 10:45 PM)dm319 Wrote:  But where is roll down?

I think it is the down arrow. Myself I never use roll down so I am not 100% sure...

Regards
Max
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08-19-2022, 12:58 PM
Post: #12
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
(08-19-2022 11:03 AM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  
(08-18-2022 10:45 PM)dm319 Wrote:  But where is roll down?
I think it is the down arrow. Myself I never use roll down so I am not 100% sure...
↑ roll up
↓ roll down
Explained in WP 31S Owner's Manual
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08-23-2022, 08:33 AM
Post: #13
RE: Idea for a simple calculator on the DM platform
Ooh yeah that 31 layout looks nice. Clean. Spartan, even.

I particularly like the Greek letters on the bottom row.
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