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Does anyone know if the 42s has a "trace" printing function like the 28c/28s?
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Yes. It's found under the PRINT menu.
Mike
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Thanks Mike, do you know if it functions the same way? (sending to the printer after each enter/function)
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Yes. Please look at page 102 of the HP42S Owner's Manual. It's on the Museum DVD.
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Yes, Keith, I believe that the TRACE functions of the various HP calculators have always been similar in producing printer output for functions executed from the keyboard, in addition to those functions executed within a program.
Thomas Okken's excellent FREE42 emulation of the HP42S AND the HP82240 printer on various platforms can be found at:
http://free42.sourceforge.net/
FREE42 is a great way to experience the functional characteristics the HP42S.
Though it is more than 20 years old, the HP42S is the best RPN calculator of all time, IMHO. Think what could be done in the same size package with today's technology!
Mike
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Thanks Walter and Mike. I don't have a 42s yet, so the advice on the emulator program is very useful. I've tried and owned a number of calcs, and am finding I like my 32sII the best right now (the 48GX has it's uses, but is not a handheld). I really like the idea of how the 28c/28s work, but they also are not true handhelds, and are cumbersome to use. I'm thinking the 42s has all the function of the 32sII (and more) with the printing capability, which I want every now and then.
Thanks again for the help!
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Keith,
Quote: I'm thinking the 42s has all the function of the 32sII (and more) with the printing capability, which I want every now and then.
You may use the comparison function of the museum and compare the 32s and 42s. The 32sii does everything the 32s does, plus fractions, but in a different approach. You can see this easily when looking at their keyboards.
The 42s does not support fractions. Not that I think the fraction feature is very important, but you should know.
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Quote:
The 42s does not support fractions.
A few other things the HP32SII has, that neither the HP42S nor the HP32S has:
(NOTE: corrected version)
 Equations
 xth root of y
 Population standard deviations
 Roll up on the keyboard
 Selected SIBritish conversions
That last one is Walter's favorite...
;)
Seriously, the HP32SII offered many features its predecessor HP32S and HP42S did not. It's more than just an HP32S with more directlyaccessible functions.
 KS
Edited: 12 Oct 2008, 2:46 p.m. after one or more responses were posted
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Karl,
You are right, of course. At 3 o'clock in the morning, I simply forgot equations. The other points, however, forget them. Who needs
Quote:
 yth root of x
 Population standard deviations
 Roll down on the keyboard
 Selected SIBritish conversions
? Shifted yth root is absolutely superfluous. Population SD is less useful than SD of the mean. Etc. ;)
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the HP32SII offered many features its predecessor HP32S and HP42S did not. It's more than just an HP32S with more directlyaccessible functions.
It's a 32s with maximum clutter. And talking about "many": the 32sii lacks many useful functions the 42s offers.
Ceterum censeo: HP, launch a 43s.
Walter
Edited: 12 Oct 2008, 7:24 a.m.
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A thing I miss in the 32S (I or II) is a beeper. TONE functions in the HP 41/42 are useful as prompts in programs, and also may work as a primitive output channel, it can drive a LED, optocoupler, etc.
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Quote:
A thing I miss in the 32S (I or II) is a beeper. TONE functions in the HP 41/42 are useful as prompts in programs, and also may work as a primitive output channel, it can drive a LED, optocoupler, etc.
Andres 
It seems that the productdesign principle was that only the topend Pioneers (HP42S, HP27S, HP17B/BII) got the extra hardware of faster Saturn chip, dotmatrix display, LED transmitter, and speaker.
The HP32S/SII provided "INPUT" for prompting data from the user. Based on the limited RAM and programstructuring capabilities of the HP32S/SII, HP probably assumed that users would not write elaborate programs that took a long time to run.
 KS
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Karl:
I enjoyed interfacing a microprocessor board (RCA COSMAC 1802) with my HP41C back in 1981, using TONE (even synthetic ones) and counting the pulses on the piezoelectric speaker. I would like the 32 (or, by the way, the 33S, 35S, or 20B) to allow for such trick. Nothing serious...
While the 20B has some nice I/O possibilities, a beeper would do some signalling without requiring firmware changes or development.
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Walter 
Quote:
The other points, however, forget them. Who needs (the following)?
 yth root of x
 Population standard deviations
 Roll down on the keyboard
 Selected SIBritish conversions
First off, I made several careless errors. I should have stated
 "xth root of y"
 Roll up on the keyboard
And, you should have stated, "SD of the sample".
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Shifted yth root is absolutely superfluous.
"xth root of y" is a convenience that allows oddinteger roots of negative numbers to be found adroitly. This is useful in programs, should this situation arise. Also, the result using "xth root of y" may be more accurate by one or more ULP than taking 1/x followed by y^x, as the internal result of 1/x is not rounded to 12 digits for output before taking y^x. Absence of "xth root of y" may explain why the unshifted 1/x and y^x are adjacent on the Voyagerseries keyboards.
For example, try taking the cube root of (e^pi)^{8}, using each of the two methods. I get a difference of 4E8, or 4 ULP of a 12digit result. Or, the cube root of 989,999,999,999: I get a difference of 9E8, or 9 ULP of a 12digit result.
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Population SD is less useful than SD of the mean. Etc. ;)
As for SD, we must consider what the user's task is. Population SD would be calculated for the quiz scores of a classroom of pupils, as 25 or so would represent the entire population. Sample SD would be used for a few trials of an experiment. However, most users nowadays would probably do these calculations using a spreadsheet, anyway...
"Roll up" is a very handy convenience, especially in programs. It's not absolutely essential; the HP32S, HP10C, and original HP35 did without it. On the HP42S, it's available only from the function catalog.
As for SI<>British conversions, that's been discussed (and argued) previously in the Forum. The conversions are useful for "us in the US", particularly the temperature conversions, which are nonproportional.
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It's a 32s with maximum clutter.
On clutter: The HP32SII arrangement is quite logical  about as good as it could be done  although not perfect as on the HP15C. The HP32SII looks somewhat cluttered because the yellow and blue shifted functions are adjacent instead of aligned vertically, and the letters for variables are also imprinted.
 KS
Edited: 12 Oct 2008, 8:08 p.m. after one or more responses were posted
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42s R^ *only* on catalog?
just assign it to a key of your choise
maybe shift Rv (pi) or perhaps 10^x
what a new 42 would need is more shift keys
OR
just one going through
left shift > right shift > both on > off again
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Quote:
42s R^ *only* on catalog? just assign it to a key of your choice
Yes, knowledgable users of the HP42S are well aware of the 3x6 = 18 available assignments to the CUSTOM menu. I've made assigments for a number of useful or repeatedlyaccessed functions that are otherwise difficult to access.
And of course, any function can be spelled out characterbycharacter and executed. So, there are always at least two ways to access any function, but not all are on the keyboard or placed in a standard menu. A table in the HP42S manual documents the accessibility of each function.
 KS
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Karl,
thanks for some clarifications of your post above.
 I understand your arguments about the xth root of y. IMHO, however, y^x and 1/x (as on the 15C) are absolutely sufficient for the grade of precision necessary in real life calculations, even in experimental sciences.
 R^ is nice to have  I don't mind it being featured or not, as long as I've got RDOWN and sufficient memory. Your mileage may vary.
 About SD: You got me wrong. I really mean the SD of the mean. Reason: The SD of the sample (s) is featured everywhere, starting with the HP45. The SD of the population (sigma) is easily calculated from s, as is the SD of the mean (or standard error, sE). The latter, however, is far more important in analysis of experiments. So, if we are talking about a *scientific* calculator, sE is of more use than sigma (who cares about quiz results then anymore?).
 Imperial<>SI conversions may be featured for those most important 5% of mankind ;), but shall not take away more keyboard space than necessary, as long as more useful functions are missing there. I didn't want to open this discussion again  you know I keep hoping the US will be faster than Myanmar / Birma in adopting SI.
BTW, if we want to be picky: My sentence started with "Who needs" and ended with a question mark after your unordered list. Please quote correctly.
Ceterum censeo: HP, launch a 43s.
Walter
Edited: 12 Oct 2008, 6:35 p.m.
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Walter 
I tidied up the quoting of you in my earlier post to encompass (without formatting) only what had preceded the lonely question mark that began a new line...
:)
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IMHO, however, y^x and 1/x (as on the 15C) are absolutely sufficient for the grade of precision necessary in real life calculations, even in experimental sciences.
That's undoubtedly true for most engineering and scientific applications. I'd surmise that 1/x followed by y^x will always give a result correct to at least 9 significant digits on Saturnera models. The preSaturn models, of course, will give fewer.
Still, it seems to have been a design objective for Saturnbased models for each mathematical operation to give a result correct to all 12 significant digits. That wasn't possible for roots without "y^(1/x)", even if 1/x and y^x individually met the standard.
There's still that issue of an oddinteger root of a negative number inside a program, too.
Bottom line: "y^(1/x)" is worth having if space is available. That is not true about x^{3} and cube root...
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R^ is nice to have  I don't mind it being featured or not (...)
On models that don't have VIEW, or don't support VIEW for stack contents, "Roll up" is a good way to peek at the value in the stack tregister.
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(...) The SD of the population (sigma) is easily calculated from s, as is the SD of the mean (or standard error, sE). The latter, however, is far more important in analysis of experiments. So, if we are talking about a *scientific* calculator, sE is of more use than sigma (...)
You may be correct that standard error [SE = s / sqrt(n)] of the xdata and ydata might be more valuable than population standard deviation (sigma). Both are fairly easy to calculate from summation data of a sample set, but one needs to know the formula (or technique to determine the desired result).
Sigmax and Sigmay may have been added to the HP32SII because space was available, and because some users were confused about the difference between "s" (sample SD) and "sigma" (population SD), and were not obtaining the correct answers they sought. Maybe that's the objective  ensure that the user will get the basic answer right, before providing additional features. BTW, which (if any) scientific/statistical calculators provide a standarderror calculation?
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(...) I keep hoping the US will be faster than Myanmar / Birma (Burma) in adopting SI.
Not likely  we've got far more infrastructure and legal records based on Imperial measurements. It's like changing the course of a supertanker. Heck, we can't even replace the dollar bill with a welldesigned dollar coin. Maybe that won't matter much in the foreseeable future, with both superseded by our very own "Notgeld"...
 KS
Edited: 12 Oct 2008, 10:10 p.m.
