Section 1: Getting Started17
The Owner’s Handbook
Numbers shown in most examples and problems in this handbook are displayed to four decimal places, like this 0.0000. As you will see, numbers can be displayed in a variety of formats, but if you want the HP-41C display to look like the ones shown on the next few pages, press g FIX 4 now.
Each key on the keyboard can perform several different functions. The particular functions that are available on the keyboard depend on the status of the calculator. If the HP-41C is in ‘‘normal’’ mode, that is not in PRGM, or ALPHA mode, the available functions are the ones printed on the face of the key and above the key.
1 ⁄ x
  To select the function above the key, first press the gold g (shift) key, then press the function key.
  To select the function on the face of the key, simply press the key.
  The character printed in blue on the lower face of the key is only available in ALPHA mode. ALPHA mode is covered in detail later.
You can always tell when you have pressed the g (shift) key; a SHIFT annunciator in the display shows each time you press g. The annunciator turns off when the shifted function is executed or if you press g again. The SHIFT annunciator looks like this:
Function Names
When you press and hold down a function key momentarily, a name for that function will appear in the display. When you hold the key down for longer than about a half second, NULL appears in the display. This means that the function has been cancelled. By pressing and holding a key you can look at the function name without actually executing the function! For example, compute the reciprocal of 10.