Re: Nothing much



#11

re; your posting.

your part 2 - i know one man who started out with a novus 4510, then bought a 41, then got a 45 from his dad when he retired, and then bought a 32sii to use for mundane stuff so he wouldn't wear out his treasures. rob is unique but i doubt he is the only one who started out with an off brand rpn and moved up to hp.

your part 4 - the microcifra is not a cheapo. it is a well made unit that used what may have been the only scientific rpn "calculator on a chip" that they could buy. the argies like to make their own stuff and do a good job of it too. i hear that there was also another brand from there that had an rpn model but i don't know if that one was a scientific. garrett, from san diego california was also not a cheapo. mine is a desktop probably made for accountants. with a thick sculpted black plastic & solid walnut body and boasting a clock, it looks more like fine furniture than a calc. as far as i know; garrett made nothing but rpn.

your part 5 - besides the 10 or so scientific & specialized financials from national/novus the american scientifics that i know of were from apf and corvus.


#12

The APF and Corvus RPN calculators are the APF Mark 55 and the Corvus 500. Both use the same Mostek chipset: MK50075, MK50103, and MK50104.

Corvus was the brand name Mostek used to market their own calculators.


#13

no fair! katie has the best toy.....again.

that was interesting mike. my omron has mostek ic's too but one of them is fried. i guess mostek was a quality company since not only the three we are talking about used mostek but hp outsourced to them for ic's as well. do you know if are they still in business?


#14

Unfortunately, Mostek is no longer around. It was acquired by what is now STMicroelectronics.

This URL is a former employee's short history of Mostek: http://www.mindspring.com/~mary.hall/mosteklives/history.htm. This URL is a photo page: http://www.mindspring.com/~mary.hall/mosteklives/photos.htm. In the lower left corner of the calculator picture is a Corvus 500. Also, be sure to read the last paragraph on the photo page.

Here is an image of a poor quality copy of an advertisement comparing the Corvus 500 to the HP-45 (warning, the image is 2MB) published in the May 1976 issue of Scientific American.


#15

thanks for the urls mike. the ad is something dave should have in the museum if he can: hp's competition. from the tone of the ad it seemed like friendly competition though. i copied them all to read slowly. did you notice the reference to mostek printing a picture of woodstock on a chip they made for hp? wonder which series that was for?

steve: i hope you get time and parts to fix your garret someday. you've got a real jewel there. mine is a 2002. which is yours?

i really like that people here like and respect the rpn thought process too and not just the hp brand. i think that hp was correct in choosing a system that analyzes the problem inside-out and is not just mindless "plug and crank" like aos. they also were correct in making most of their units to last too. doing both for a long time is what made them great. then.


#16

<<steve: i hope you get time and parts to fix your garret someday. you've got a real jewel there. mine is a 2002. which is yours?>>

Mine's a 2002 as well, but i've seen the same machine under a different name, but I don't remember what it was. It's definitely a very nice machine.


#17

mike; re: my stupid question. of course you saw them - you pointed them out to me! yes the character of homer simpson IS loosely based on me.

dave and katie; whatever calc i am using i always stroke the keys with my left hand so i can scribble with my right one. since i don't touch type i never thought that one side would be better with right handers than the other for the arithmetic keys but i guess it is. and it puts me square in the southpaw camp.

steve; if you ever get to working on your 2002 and need output data AND you know someone in the sf area who can figure out how to tell you what you need (that's way over my head) let me know and i'll get mine over to him. you can tell that i really think you have a cool unit there.

#18

Why isn't this the Corvus Forum!? That looks like a great machine, but I don't recall having ever heard of it before, let alone seeing one. All my friends and I wanted the latest HP at this epoch, I guess! (I was just out of graduate school, had a job (and no dependents!), and could conceive of spending a few hundred bucks on a useful toy.)

I've asked about this before, but never got any answers: The Corvus 500, and the HP calcs of this era, all have the arithmetic keys (+ - x divide) on the left hand side of the body, where a right-handed person would like them (at least I do), because you can easily see what operation you are about to do. At some later date, certainly by the HP11, these keys are on the RIGHT hand side of the calculator - not as convenient IMHO. You have to move your hand way to the right, or learn to punch the arithmetic buttons with your little finger. Does anybody know why HP changed the location? The revenge of a left-handed designer??


#19

I agree with you that the left side is the better place for the math keys, but only on the handheld machines. If you can work the desktop machines without looking at the keys and you're right handed, having the math keys on the right side is better. I think that HP figured this out and made their desktop machine that way starting with the 9815, 46 and the 91. I would guess that they realized that some people use their handheld calculators on their desk and made the switch for these too starting with the 10 series. But for effective touch typing you also need a key input buffer. The 10 series didn't have one, I don't know why. But they did add a buffer starting with the 18C and I think that all subsequent machines have at least a 2 or 3 key buffer.

Interestingly, Wang made their machines with duplicate math keys -- one set to the left of the numeric keys one set on the right. They didn't want to disenfranchise anyone!

#20

Thanks for the URL's Mike.

So after reading the last paragraph, I wonder. Which came first, The yellow cases on the outside of the Woodstock machines, or the real Woodstock inside every Mostek chip inside every Woodstock?

#21

<<your part 4 - the microcifra is not a cheapo. it is a well made unit that used what may have been the only scientific rpn "calculator on a chip" that they could buy. the argies like to make their own stuff and do a good job of it too. i hear that there was also another brand from there that had an rpn model but i don't know if that one was a scientific. garrett, from san diego california was also not a cheapo. mine is a desktop probably made for accountants. with a thick sculpted black plastic & solid walnut body and boasting a clock, it looks more like fine furniture than a calc. as far as i know; garrett made nothing but rpn.

your part 5 - besides the 10 or so scientific & specialized financials from national/novus the american scientifics that i know of were from apf and corvus.>>


Thanks for the correction, db.


I didn't realize apf and Corvus made rpn's, or I had forgotten. I guess it was a pretty respectable field all told, though with the market what it was back then (tumultuous) the various rpn models may not have been exactly concurrent. Also i'm fairly certain that all these 'second sources' for RPN also made algebraics at some point, which is sort of like fighting on both sides in the war, with respect to our discussion. Kind of amusing.

BTW I have one of those Garretts, mine doesn't work. I've never bothered to try to repair it since it isn't scientific.


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