The OTHER guys calculators


Hello all. I saw today an ad for the TI Inspire CX series. Any opinions here on these units? In my mid-fifties now, and approaching the 40 year mark as an HP owner/user, I hesitate to dig too deeply into the dark side...

Especially that icky algebraic notation.


Earl, I'm just a tad older than you, and a math teacher at middle school level.

It's somewhat of a misnomer to call the NSpire CX series a "calculator." It's really more of a "student mathematical experimenting or learning device." Truthfully, it's more of a PC than a true calculator, containing "apps" for calculator, graphs, geometry, lists/spreadsheet, data/statistics, and notes. A variable or function defined in one app is accessible in the other apps, so, for example, you could use the calculator app to define a function like f1(x)=3x2+7 and use that function in the spreadsheet or, of course, graph app. So it's kind of dynamic. In it's latest iteration, like the Casio Prizm, you can draw or import a picture of something, select some points along a line or curve on the object, and have it derive the equation. That's kind of neat for students discovering math principles, but not terribly useful for an engineer, for example, I think. Or you can dynamically change the shape of a graphed curve (by pointing and dragging) and see how the related equation changes in realtime. If these types of things interest you, you may find it worthwhile. If you're just looking for an engineer's calculator, you probably won't like it.

It's color screen is fantastic, but at my age the letters are a tad on the small size.

And it's not cheap.


I have the new TI nspire CX CAS. It is slick and cool. I love the colors and also the power of the CAS part. The symbolic computational part is like having a built-in mathematical handbook. I learned a few years ago that creating some of the nice TI calculators (including the early TI nspire) involved ex-HP folks who had worked in Corvallis.

I am waiting for the replacement of the HP-50g that will put the fear of the digital gods in the TI nspire.



It's designed for education and school usage, so if that's what you want, go for it!

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