Scientific Calculator

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Mick F
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Scientific Calculator

Postby Mick F » 13 Oct 2014, 9:23pm

I have a Texas Instruments scientific calculator that I never use any more. It sits in a drawer, unloved and unused.
Why have I still got it?
http://mycalcdb.free.fr/main.php?l=0&id=5192
Mick F. Cornwall

trull
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby trull » 13 Oct 2014, 10:48pm

Don't know, I use an emulated HP 12C myself from time to time.

beardy
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby beardy » 13 Oct 2014, 11:07pm

I still have and use my Casio FX80 that I got for my 16th birthday in 1980.

Not bad 34 years as my personal calculator and probably only on its fourth pair of batteries!

tatanab
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby tatanab » 14 Oct 2014, 8:41am

I have a Casio FX3800P which is a hexalator (scientific calculator with hex/octal/binary/decimal options). I got that in 1985 when I was 33. It does not get used much at all these days.

kwackers
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby kwackers » 14 Oct 2014, 9:02am

I've got loads of old calculators, from my original Casio scientific circa '77 which cost me an arm and a leg, through HP RPN calculators up to pretty complex engineering calculators.
They all still work and sit in various drawers/shelves etc around the house. It's not often I'm more than an arms length away from one (or more often two) of them.
Interestingly they all still work and have never had replacement batteries!

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squeaker
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby squeaker » 14 Oct 2014, 10:53am

Mick F wrote:Why have I still got it?
'cos it's not be recycled yet?

My HP11C's batteries finally gave up the ghost after 34 years; the second set should pretty much see me out :wink:
"42"

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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 14 Oct 2014, 11:35am

Hi,
I came top in the mock exam results in my year of over 500 pupils in maths.
We could use calculators but not in exams, of course you had to be able to afford one.
My first was when I left school and was I think some thing like £9, I was on £15 / week.
Sinclair Scentific.

http://classiccmp.org/dunfield/calc/index.htm

"The Sinclair Scientific (1975) is one of the earliest affordable scientific calculators. It operates in reverse polish notation, with only a scientific format display of 5 mantissa and 2 exponent digits. The scientific functions are implemented without a special processor, which reduced cost, however the results have been described as "at best an approximation".
sinsci.jpg

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tatanab
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby tatanab » 14 Oct 2014, 11:54am

Sinclair Scientific - that was my first calculator in about 1976 when the price dropped. Reverse Polish notation made it interesting. There was a particular resistor that must have been "select on test" at the factory because we found that if we changed it (within a fairly narrow range) we could speed up its "thinking" time when using trig functions. Probably at the expense of battery life.

Up until then I 'd been using a slide rule which was permitted in 6th form and college. Calculators were new in my last few years in college and forbidden in exams unless you set down the precise model and did not use one with any programmable function. I remember a lecturer telling us he always deducted marks from people who had just copied down the answer on the display. He said if a question is set with units to one decimal place then that is the accuracy expected of answer, not 8 decimal places.

skicat
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby skicat » 14 Oct 2014, 1:00pm

The Sinclair Scientific was my first calculator too, although being a bit hard-core (and a hard up teenager), I built it myself from a kit.

I never managed to convince my mother of its usefulness, even when I took it shopping and added up the cost as we went along. Which wasn't easy, entering numbers in scientific notation and reverse polish.

Some Google chap with a lot of spare time has reverse-engineered the Scientific and created a fully working emulator http://files.righto.com/calculator/sinclair_scientific_simulator.html
The hurrier I go, the behinder I get

kwackers
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby kwackers » 14 Oct 2014, 1:16pm

skicat wrote:Some Google chap with a lot of spare time has reverse-engineered the Scientific and created a fully working emulator http://files.righto.com/calculator/sinclair_scientific_simulator.html

That's cool! Cheers.

Bicycler
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby Bicycler » 14 Oct 2014, 1:19pm

tatanab wrote:Up until then I 'd been using a slide rule which was permitted in 6th form and college. Calculators were new in my last few years in college and forbidden in exams unless you set down the precise model and did not use one with any programmable function. I remember a lecturer telling us he always deducted marks from people who had just copied down the answer on the display. He said if a question is set with units to one decimal place then that is the accuracy expected of answer, not 8 decimal places.

It is still standard practice to deduct marks for that error. If you have measured something to the nearest tenth of a unit, it is incorrect to perform a calculation and quote an answer to 7 decimal places just because it appears on a calculator. It implies a level of precision which you cannot truly claim. You may have measured your bike ride as being 20 miles in distance and having taken 87 minutes but that doesn't mean you can claim to have been averaging 13.7931034483mph (apparently google's calculator goes to 10 decimal places).

A friend's nephew was roundly ridiculed for providing, in response to the problem he had been set, the answer that an event organiser would require 4.6666667 buses to get attendees to an event :lol:

rjb
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby rjb » 14 Oct 2014, 2:09pm

British Thornton. Do they still exist or did they disappear when electronic calculators arrived. Now where's my abacus ! :shock:
image.jpg
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TonyR
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Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby TonyR » 14 Oct 2014, 2:21pm

NATURAL ANKLING wrote:Hi,
I came top in the mock exam results in my year of over 500 pupils in maths.
We could use calculators but not in exams, of course you had to be able to afford one.
My first was when I left school and was I think some thing like £9, I was on £15 / week.
Sinclair Scentific.

http://classiccmp.org/dunfield/calc/index.htm

"The Sinclair Scientific (1975) is one of the earliest affordable scientific calculators. It operates in reverse polish notation, with only a scientific format display of 5 mantissa and 2 exponent digits. The scientific functions are implemented without a special processor, which reduced cost, however the results have been described as "at best an approximation".
sinsci.jpg

Super cool, Red leds pre LCD and eats 4 x AAA batts :D



....and took a minute to calculate sin45 and get it wrong!

TonyR
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Joined: 31 Aug 2008, 12:51pm

Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby TonyR » 14 Oct 2014, 2:22pm

rjb wrote:British Thornton. Do they still exist or did they disappear when electronic calculators arrived. Now where's my abacus ! :shock:
image.jpg


And log tables?

Colin_P
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Joined: 19 Aug 2013, 2:21am

Re: Scientific Calculator

Postby Colin_P » 14 Oct 2014, 3:27pm

58008
55378008
71077345


Anyone remember the snigger inducing fun punching those numbers in and turning the calculator upside down ?
Sorry for lowering the tone.