Passionate about a calculator?

For the discussion of math. Duh.

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liza
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Passionate about a calculator?

Postby liza » Sun May 13, 2007 10:08 am UTC

I was just wondering if there's anyone else out there passionate about their calculator. For pre-calc (or perhaps integrated 4) I had to get a graphing calculator and chose to purchase a Casio, despite my teacher's urging not to. From then on, I boasted how awesome my calculator is compared my math compatriots' TI's. It even has a name. :)

This year I took Calculus and my friend bought a TI-89 for it, and soon a similar affection developed (though anyone who took Calc must have a similar respect for a calcular that can do symbolic math and improper integrals).

This behaviour didn't even strike me as weird until I mentioned it to someone not taking math with me.

Anyway, to the point of this topic. Have you ever been passionate about a calculator? :)

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Postby Andrew » Sun May 13, 2007 10:16 am UTC

My TI had a slideshow feature that was designed for teaching purposes. I hear you could hook it up to a projector but I don't see why you ever would.

I drew an animation of someone's head exploding in it instead. That got other people interested.

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Postby miles01110 » Sun May 13, 2007 10:30 am UTC

I still use my TI-83 silver. I have a TI-89, but I don't like how it doesn't take you immediately to the calculation screen (can you set it up to do that?). Also I find entering equations to be tedious. Maybe I'm just a TI-89 newbie though.

Boo to casio...

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Postby cjr » Sun May 13, 2007 10:47 am UTC

I have a ti-83+ which I ended up taking to a pub once, I liked it so much :S

Haven't used it since I started university though

EDIT: I've just read that back and it sounds like I went on a date with my calculator...

I just meant I brought it to show other people the, er, programs I had on it
Last edited by cjr on Sun May 13, 2007 11:26 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby crazyjimbo » Sun May 13, 2007 11:14 am UTC

You can't beat my good old Casio fx-85MS. Sure it doesn't do graphs, and you can't make your teachers head explode with it, but it's been there for me during rough times.

I've never had a use for a graphing calculator. I use my calculator for mental arithmatic that I'm too dumb to do, but if I want to draw a graph, or anything fancier, computers just make the job so much easier.

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Postby Torn Apart By Dingos » Sun May 13, 2007 12:00 pm UTC

I loved my TI-83+. I had made several games and programs for it. I was particularly proud of a program that animated a rotating wireframe cube. Then some fucking cunt tricked me into testing out a key combination that would activate a display test program. He didn't lie about that, but he didn't tell me that would erase the memory of the calculator. Since then I've barely touched it.

I have a TI-89 too, but I never developed an affection for it. One thing that sucks about it is that it plots slower (though more accurate, possibly) than my old TI-83+.

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Postby ptveite » Sun May 13, 2007 12:05 pm UTC

I'm on my 4th graphing calculator. My first two were TI-82's and then I had a TI-85. Even though I'm a math major, I hardly use my current TI-89 anymore. At some point math ceases to be about numbers.

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Postby hyperion » Sun May 13, 2007 1:26 pm UTC

My school won't let us use TIs, they say they can be used for cheating. I don't know what makes them better at cheating than other graphics calcs, but they seem to think there's a difference.

So my weapon of choice is my trusty HP 39g+. It helped me get into programming, and I can make it do some cool shit.
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Postby MMoto » Sun May 13, 2007 1:27 pm UTC

Best calculator I've ever had is my Radio Shack EC-4032. My dad bought it for me for high school 13 years ago, and I've used it ever since. I had a TI-83 at one point, but it just wasn't the same.

This calculator kept me sane through the tedium of high school math: it helped me learn bases other than 10, permutations and combinations, hyperbolic trig, polar coördinates, linear regression, complex numbers, ...

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Postby RIPshika » Sun May 13, 2007 4:48 pm UTC

As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.

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Postby Andrew » Sun May 13, 2007 5:01 pm UTC

I never use mine either. To be honest it's pretty rare I need to do anything I'd need it fir when I'm not within ten feet of a PC anyway.

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Postby mrsaturn » Sun May 13, 2007 7:02 pm UTC

Ever since i lost my ti-89 a year ago my life has been better.

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Postby Woxor » Sun May 13, 2007 7:05 pm UTC

I still use my TI-89 from time to time, even in math graduate school. I've never really used another type, but it seems good enough to me. I also loved it when I studied engineering.

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Postby Solt » Sun May 13, 2007 7:05 pm UTC

miles01110 wrote:I still use my TI-83 silver. I have a TI-89, but I don't like how it doesn't take you immediately to the calculation screen (can you set it up to do that?). Also I find entering equations to be tedious. Maybe I'm just a TI-89 newbie though.

Boo to casio...



My 89 has never gone to the desktop/icon screen. I don't seem to have one.
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Postby demon » Sun May 13, 2007 7:14 pm UTC

the only moment in my life when a graphing calculator was both useful and allowed was the SAT Math level 2 exam. Or would be, since I didn't have one - I never owned a graphing calculator. But since the exam proved to be easy enough to ace with my trusty old casio that I got from a lousy math contest years ago, I don't complain.

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Postby orangeperson » Sun May 13, 2007 11:06 pm UTC

I don't think that anything more advanced than a scientific calculator should be allowed on the SATs and SAT IIs. It's a huge advantage to have one.

I've a ti-84+. It's fun. Hoorah!
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Postby EvanED » Sun May 13, 2007 11:08 pm UTC

I had a TI-85, which I swore by over 83s. (Though I am occasionally still bitter that I didn't put forth the extra 20 bucks to get the 86. Something like 4x the memory, much better screen, more features...)

I use it very rarely though.

For a long time I used a TI-35x (later slightly redesigned form factor), which is *great* calculator for the non-graphing calculator genre. I lost it at some point though. But man, for tests where there calculators were allowed but graphing calculators weren't, that one rocked. (Though apparently it has a small bug that causes it to calculate some things wrong...)

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Postby EvanED » Sun May 13, 2007 11:10 pm UTC

orangeperson wrote:I don't think that anything more advanced than a scientific calculator should be allowed on the SATs and SAT IIs. It's a huge advantage to have one.

I've a ti-84+. It's fun. Hoorah!


Agreed. AP calc and physics exams too.

I'm not happy that if, say, an integration by parts question comes up an 89 owner can probably just punch it into his calculator while I have to do it by hand.

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Postby bitwiseshiftleft » Sun May 13, 2007 11:17 pm UTC

EvanED wrote:I had a TI-85, which I swore by over 83s. (Though I am occasionally still bitter that I didn't put forth the extra 20 bucks to get the 86. Something like 4x the memory, much better screen, more features...)


I had a TI-86. The best thing about it was the ridiculously complete OS documentation available on the internet. Using this, I wrote and assembled a program which prevents the calculator's memory from being cleared with the "clear memory" command, and instead fakes a memory clear by erasing and dimming the screen, and writing "Mem cleared. Defaults set." That way, I could play Mario / Tetris / whatever during math tests.

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Postby Jach » Mon May 14, 2007 12:43 am UTC

I'm not happy that if, say, an integration by parts question comes up an 89 owner can probably just punch it into his calculator while I have to do it by hand.


The best way around that is to force a no-calculator section on a test, or give everyone an 89.

I've had an 89 Titanium since two Christmases ago and have loved it ever since. It appeals to my natural laziness, for one. Though I always make sure to learn how to do something by hand before I go and mindlessly type stuff into the calculator (plus in my math class we have to show work for everything.)

I still use my TI-83 silver. I have a TI-89, but I don't like how it doesn't take you immediately to the calculation screen (can you set it up to do that?). Also I find entering equations to be tedious. Maybe I'm just a TI-89 newbie though.

Just go into your Mode and set the Apps Desktop to Off.

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Postby thefiddler » Mon May 14, 2007 12:49 am UTC

RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.

I thought that was one of the calculators you couldn't use? Or is it just the ACT that limits calculators?

Anyway, I have a TI-83+. It's pretty nifty, handy, fun... I keep it in my purse. >.> That makes me sound kind of weird, but I just stopped carrying around a bag about halfway through this year and it's been in my purse since. It probably won't come out, either, because it is useful. XD

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Postby EvanED » Mon May 14, 2007 12:53 am UTC

thefiddler wrote:
RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.

I thought that was one of the calculators you couldn't use? Or is it just the ACT that limits calculators?


When I took the AP exam, I believe it was any calculator without a QWERTY keyboard. That ruled out the 92, but not the 89.

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Postby Torn Apart By Dingos » Mon May 14, 2007 12:54 am UTC

bitwiseshiftleft wrote:
EvanED wrote:I had a TI-85, which I swore by over 83s. (Though I am occasionally still bitter that I didn't put forth the extra 20 bucks to get the 86. Something like 4x the memory, much better screen, more features...)


I had a TI-86. The best thing about it was the ridiculously complete OS documentation available on the internet. Using this, I wrote and assembled a program which prevents the calculator's memory from being cleared with the "clear memory" command, and instead fakes a memory clear by erasing and dimming the screen, and writing "Mem cleared. Defaults set." That way, I could play Mario / Tetris / whatever during math tests.

Your teachers actually erased your calculators before tests? I heard that was what was supposed to be done, but it never happened to me and if it had, I would've refused and done the test without the calculator.

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Postby gmalivuk » Mon May 14, 2007 1:01 am UTC

I (would have) had quite a business going in high school (if I'd charged for it) writing programs for the different types of TI calculators that would make it look like the memory was erased.

The one I liked least was the 83, because some of the stuff had to be done as actual pictures since it didn't have the same menu system and such that the 86, for instance, has.
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Postby skeptical scientist » Mon May 14, 2007 1:51 am UTC

gmalivuk, why would someone want such a program?
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Postby EradicateIV » Mon May 14, 2007 2:02 am UTC

skeptical scientist wrote:gmalivuk, why would someone want such a program?


A few of my math teachers in high school would walk around before a test and make us show them the clear memory screen on the calculators before he or she would hand out the test.

The first test was obviously bad for some as they DEPENDED on this method to get a good grade.

People still do it in College which sort of angers me due to the lack of caring of some professors.
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Postby liza » Mon May 14, 2007 2:24 am UTC

miles01110 wrote:Boo to casio...


Blasphemy! Viva la Casio!

RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.


The Calc test last week was the only instance in my math career that I genuinely lamented my dedication to the Casio and wish I had an 89 (I wasn't doing too well).

thefiddler wrote:I thought that was one of the calculators you couldn't use? Or is it just the ACT that limits calculators?

Yes, just ACT. The SAT allows 89's (but not QWERTY's) and AP Calc test not only recommends graphing calculators but requires them.

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Postby thefiddler » Mon May 14, 2007 2:31 am UTC

Somnia wrote:
thefiddler wrote:I thought that was one of the calculators you couldn't use? Or is it just the ACT that limits calculators?

Yes, just ACT. The SAT allows 89's (but not QWERTY's) and AP Calc test not only recommends graphing calculators but requires them.

Bah, I know that they hardcore recommend graphing calculators for the test. I took it last week and wanted to cry during the calculator portion. When my Calc teacher got wind of what some of the non-calculator portion questions were like, though, he freaked out. All "those are too hard! I teach this class and I'd want a calculator for those!" Yeah, that didn't raise my morale in regards to the test at all. :(

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Postby adlaiff6 » Mon May 14, 2007 3:15 am UTC

I haven't used a calculator in a while.
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Postby Strilanc » Mon May 14, 2007 4:06 am UTC

My 89 is like a mentor, it tells me when I'm wrong in calculus.
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Postby bitwiseshiftleft » Mon May 14, 2007 4:23 am UTC

torn apart by dingos wrote:Your teachers actually erased your calculators before tests? I heard that was what was supposed to be done, but it never happened to me and if it had, I would've refused and done the test without the calculator.


Yeah, most of the math and science teachers erased before tests. Also, some of them would erase your calculator if you got caught playing games in class. Having a daemon to prevent memory clears was very handy for that reason, and if anything went badly wrong and you really needed to clear it (and couldn't disable the program), you could always just yank the backup batteries.

As an avid calculator-gaming fan, I didn't want my games to be erased, so I wrote the program; I never used it to cheat. Taking tests without a calculator would be less fun, because then I wouldn't be able to play Tetris after finishing early.

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Postby Pathway » Mon May 14, 2007 4:54 am UTC

RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.


They let you have those on the AP exam now?
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Postby Solt » Mon May 14, 2007 5:53 am UTC

Pathway wrote:
RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.


They let you have those on the AP exam now?



It isn't actually useful. The problems it can solve are free response, meaning you get graded on the work you show.
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Postby liza » Mon May 14, 2007 6:03 am UTC

thefiddler wrote: I took it last week and wanted to cry during the calculator portion. When my Calc teacher got wind of what some of the non-calculator portion questions were like, though, he freaked out. All "those are too hard! I teach this class and I'd want a calculator for those!" Yeah, that didn't raise my morale in regards to the test at all. :(


Free-response or multiple choice? (Oh wait, we're not to speak of the multiple choice ever ever ever, right? :wink:)

Solt wrote:
Pathway wrote:
RIPshika wrote:As a AP Calc student who just took the AP test this previous week, I love my TI 89 with a passion.


They let you have those on the AP exam now?



It isn't actually useful. The problems it can solve are free response, meaning you get graded on the work you show.


I wouldn't go that far. I still think 89's are useful in that they can check your work and send you in the right direction. When I consulted with my friend with the 89 after the test, he told me the right answer and I said, (rather loudly, in a restaraunt) "Oh my gosh, I see it now!" Very frustrating.

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Postby Peripatetic » Mon May 14, 2007 6:40 am UTC

I've had my TI-85 for about 11 years now and I still love it. It's built like a block of iron and has suffered no damage for all the times I've dropped it or carelessly left it in a bag with heavy textbooks. I learned how to program on it and once made an ASCIImation of a cell dividing while I was bored in biology.

Best part: built-in physics constants and unit conversions.

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Postby questionallthings » Mon May 14, 2007 6:43 am UTC

Back in '97 during AP Calc (GOD 10 YEARS) I use to love my TI-82. Me and my friend would program old school first person RPGs. Basic mind you but man did we waste our time. I never understood why I didn't get into Computer Programming.

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Postby Berge » Mon May 14, 2007 7:47 am UTC

My Ti-86 and I have been through some good times together. We absolutely rocked the AP Calc and Comp Sci exams, though its presence for the compsci exam was more a psychological comfort than a mathematical aid. I've grown quite attached to it over the past 6 years, and even though its quite out of date at this point is suits my needs still.

I actually used to write my own programs on it, and draw pretty pictures with the draw function. I never really used it to play games, which is pretty much the only thing everyone else did with their TIs in highschool.
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Postby Alpha Omicron » Mon May 14, 2007 1:42 pm UTC

I love my little TI calculator. It's called Shirley, 'cause she's shirley right. Get it?
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Postby ZeroSum » Mon May 14, 2007 1:52 pm UTC

TI-83s are evil. I like the TI-85/86.

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Postby The LuigiManiac » Mon May 14, 2007 1:57 pm UTC

Alpha Omicron wrote:I love my little TI calculator. It's called Shirley, 'cause she's shirley right. Get it?


Shirley you can't be serious!
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