39GII -> 50G idea


HP should Xpand the 39GII to a 50G successor.


What does "gii" mean for calculators ?
Graph 2 ?


HP should Xpand the 39GII to a 50G successor.

Don't expect that it's going to happen! HP-39gII is the latest calculator in the HP-38/39g series. You can expect it to be more or less like its siblings. In most aspects, it's more powerful than the TI-84 series and the TI-85/86. However, HP-50g obviously has specifications that satisfy higher requirements of science/engineering students and professionals. This is market segmentation.


That's what i meant: The 39GII for high school and an eXpanded 39GII for professionals as an successor for the 50G. Why?

1. The 50G involve the principles and the history of HP Calculators.

2. The 39GII is the architecture of the future.

3. The Xpander involves the features which needed by the most profitable market.

In my opinion Xcas by B. Parisse could be a basis for that.


As Tim wrote here the 5 Aug : "Just to be clear, most of the programming language design is based on the programming language found in Bernard's xcas, which is also internally hidden in the 39gII. We didn't really "invent" it, but rather tried to match what was in use there with some minor extensions to support the app structure in use on the calculator. "

So I am optimitic about futur

I also notice that the (very) older version of XCAS allowed RPN, but B Parisse has stopped this because of the lacks of interest of XCAS users for RPN :

Xcas and RPN

I remember also that Tim wrote that the HP39gII is a first calc (from scratch) of a new family of graphic calculators.

So i'm optimistic for a futur high end CAS RPN calculator, but less for a new RPL calculator with backward compatibility


I have no specific knowledge, but I suspect that this is the direction HP will take.

To me, the interesting question is whether they will attempt to continue using RPL for the operating system. I believe this would only make sense if they switched to a byte-addressable model instead of the nibble-addressable model of the Saturn processor. But going to byte addressing means a pretty major porting effort since the size of all RPL objects would change, among other things.


My own post made me realize that we might see a 50g replacement at HHC2012. I was on the fence about going, but no longer. Plane and hotel booked. Probability of attendance - 100%.


Maybe it'll be similar to that HP-51G concept we saw here on the forum a few months ago.

Back to the honorable roots

Edited: 18 Aug 2012, 12:32 a.m.


I wrote a long description of things I thought could be improved on the 50g shortly after I got mine, but I can't find it here. Maybe it was on the HP support site. I was upgrading from a 41C after 30 years or so and I'd never even seen a graphing calculator before, so I thought my "virgin user" comments might be helpful.

Probably the most important things were

  • two rows of soft keys and soft labels.
  • soft labels change when you press a shift key so you always know what they do.
  • All keys display the name of their function if held down for a while like the 41 series did.
  • keyboard overlays.
Two rows of soft keys would let you greatly reduce the clutter on the keyboard. Prev/Nxt could go away and be replaced by soft keys for the rare menus that would need them. Something like half the functions on the keyboard simply serve to activate a menu or start an environment. These could all be pushed under a "menu" key.

Overlays would put an end to the endless debates over whether "reverse hyperbolic normalized triangulated probability distribution" should be on the keyboard, or if "conditional jump to subroutine and skip two if less than" is more important. One could create an overlay and keyboard assignment for their the functions related to their favorite topic (fluid dynamics, electrical engineering, probability, statistics, integer math, programming, or whatever).


I don't think that HP is going to reach back 30 years and use an old design such as the 11,12,15 and 16. (HP-51 pic) A device with overlays probably isn't going to happen either. The younger generation won't want to deal with that. I sincerely hope that HP is in the process of doing a new calculator app that has several skins that cover "fluid dynamics, electrical engineering, probability, statistics, integer math, programming, or whatever." I could also see them doing a device that has a form factor of a larger smart phone say with a 5 inch screen loaded with either an all encompassing calculator firmware or capable of being loaded with any number of calc apps. My grandson is growing up with touchscreens and it is the future. Well at least until we get to the place that eye control glasses that have a see thru display become common.


Here's what I'm thinking...Maybe it's a wee bit to 23rd century but, couldn't HP design a calc, like a 50G/48GX/41C (Opt 001) form factor with actual keys but, here's the trick--the keys are actually illuminated with the function mnemonics depending on the shift/alpha mode. In other words, instead of the keys being permanently double-shot injection molded with function legends, each key, faceplate is a virtual physical keyboard area to display the appropriate keyboard legends based on whichever shift, alpha, etc. mode the keyboard is in.

Edited: 18 Aug 2012, 6:22 p.m.


HP needs to put the enter key back to where it belongs: in the mid left as a double width key and not as a tiny key at the bottom right!! Also they need to go back to the nice high quality glossy keys in the old day.


HP needs to put the enter key back to where it belongs: in the mid left as a double width key and not as a tiny key at the bottom right!!

That would be terribly bad from an ergonomics standpoint. The ENTER key needs always to be in the same key column as the /*-+ keys. It was an idiotic notion some 30 years ago when HP separated these keys.
It would be only slightly more absurd to do something really bizarre, like alternate these keys, some left, some right.

It doesn't matter which side of the keyboard the /*-+ and ENTER keys are located...as long as they are ALL on the same side.


By the 23rd century there will probably be no need of "devices". Everything will be direct (or indirect) brain transfer and we'll only need to think of a problem and the intercranial Google will find or solve for the answer. :)

But, along those lines, I did just read about some new touchscreen technology which promises to create tactile "buttons" that will rise out of the screen's normally flat surface. I think they already have it working. Not a direct replacement for the wonderful HP button technology (for me at least) but there's no telling where electronics, nano-tech and bio-tech will be taking us in the coming years. I say prepare to be amazed!


You need a projection keyboard. It won't have tactile feedback, but everybody could program their own ideal keyboard (for use almost anywhere)!

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