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Programmable .Calculator

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Joel Kolstad, Feb 16, 2005.

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  1. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    eBay? New ones no longer exist. Your (new equipment) options are as

    -- Get an HP-33S, about the only significantly programmable non-graphing
    scientific calculator left.
    -- Get an HP-4xx or TI-8xx programmable graphing calculators. Neither uses
    BASIC natively, however. (The HPs use RPL, which is pretty nice to program
    in, actually...)
    -- Get a PDA. Under both the PalmOS and Windows CE, you can find many
    different programming languages out there, including BASIC.

    The downside of the PDA approach, of course, is the lack of a large number
    of physical keys. There's a product called Qonos which is supposed to come
    out 'any month now' that's effectively a PDA reference design with various
    extensions including a scientific calculator keyboard; I'm looking forward
    to it.

    ---Joel Kolstad
  2. Al Borowski

    Al Borowski Guest

    Where abouts are you? I think TI, HP and Casio all make them.

  3. Fernando

    Fernando Guest


    Can anybody tell me where to buy programmable portable calculator,
    preferably in BASIC?

  4. John Smith

    John Smith Guest


  5. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    Why not write Basic programs on your PC? Programmable calculator
    programs are limited in function and clumsy to use.

    I haven't programmed a calculator in decades, not since the HP9100.

  6. Al Borowski

    Al Borowski Guest

    So how can you comment on modern designs, when you've only used decades
    old technology? :)

    Depending on the complexity of the program, I'd get a TI84 ot TI89. Both
    can be programmed in basic. The HP line offer a 'basic' that really
    isn't much of a basic at all (no GOTO for instance). Dunno about the casios.

  7. You could buy a Windows PDA (or PDA/cellphone combo) and program it in
    BASIC or Python or PL/1 or whatever.

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  8. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    Well, I *have* modern programmable calculators, but what with the tiny
    screens and limited storage and program documentation and archiving,
    they just don't make sense to program. I write Basic programs that
    have friendly, colorful menus, commented internals, color graphics,
    and that I can save on a backed-up hard drive. And my Pentium will
    out-compute any calculator by 1000:1 or something, which is useful if
    an algorithm needs a lot of iterating. I must have hundreds of little
    Basic applications I've written over the years.

    Basic programs are fairly portable, too; one can hack an old DOS Basic
    program to be useful in, say, PowerBasic in a few minutes. Lots of
    programmable-calculator programs are gone when that calculator goes
    out of production.

    I bet none of them do file I/O, or big arrays, or accept input from
    other programs.

  9. Fernando

    Fernando Guest

    I am wanting to use the calculator in flight of ultralight and it is
    difficult to use a computer on board

    I am wanting to know which the programmable calculators found now..

  10. Al Borowski

    Al Borowski Guest

    Ah, I see. Sorry for the assumption.

    Sounds more like an application for a PDA or Laptop then. It depends on
    what you want to do. A calculator will give a month or so battery life
    which can be useful sometimes.

    In basic? I don't think so. If you want to use C then I think they all do.

  11. Chaos Master

    Chaos Master Guest

    This is Fernando for forever:
    No BASIC, but I like HP48/49 calculators. 49G+ seems rather good with SD
    card support. And RPL is easy, anyway.
    Chaos Master®, posting from Canoas, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil - 29.55° S
    / 51.11° W / GMT-2h / 15m .

    "People told me I can't dress like a fairy.
    I say, I'm in a rock band and I can do what the hell I want!"
    -- Amy Lee

    (My e-mail address isn't read. Please reply to the group!)
  12. TCS

    TCS Guest

    The HP71 and 75 could be programmed in BASIC.

    I believe BASIC is also available for palm pdas.
  13. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    No, really, the 32-bit versions of PowerBasic can do gigabyte arrays,
    huge programs, TCP/IP, BIOS/API calls, all that good stuff.

  14. Al Borowski

    Al Borowski Guest

    And you'd want to do those on a calculator because...? :)

  15. John Larkin

    John Larkin Guest

    I wouldn't. Calculators are for arithmetic, computers are for

  16. Guy Macon

    Guy Macon Guest

    A PalmOS device would be a *far* better choice for your application.
  17. Guy Macon

    Guy Macon Guest

    And you can run them on a PC104 system with a serial LCD and a
    custom keyboard that is designed for your application, and it
    will be about the size of a top-end calculator.
  18. Ken Smith

    Ken Smith Guest

    You can get an IBM PC like circuit on a card about the size of a PCMCIA
  19. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    Calculators are also for 'simple' programs, such as finding MOSFET currents
    after branching based on the mode of operation, etc.

    I think of programmable calculators as good for anything that takes less
    time to compute than it takes you to bring a laptop out of standby, launch
    MathCAD/Matlab/Excel/whatever, open your design file, and use it instead.
  20. Joel Kolstad

    Joel Kolstad Guest

    But it won't run off of a pair or CR2032 batteries through a couple years
    normal usage now, will it? :)
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