wp34s vs calculator group (food for thought)



#59

Hello,

First, I want to say that I am a huge fan of the team and what they have done. Cyrille had about given up hope someone would take advantage of the dev kit he managed to get released.

What I am going to say is just something I've been wanting to say for quite a while now. This is in no way a criticism of the fine work they've done. Nor is it a criticism of any individual. Nor may it ever be interesting to you. :-)

---------------------------

How many people now have been involved in looking at or commenting on the wp34s now? How long has it been under development?

Yet with all of the people banging on it, and all the time spent working on it, why are there still new bugs being found? Why does there keep being people with differing opinions about the way things should be? Why is it not perfect yet with so much help?

---------------------------

My point is this - I would love nothing better then to have 100+ people testing each unit for a year before it comes out. I would love nothing better then to be able to spent as much time on everything until it is "perfect". I would love nothing better then to revisit old products and continually improve them whenever there is a good idea or a slight reason to do so.

With the 34, everybody has a cable and can update with no issues. There are no support concerns if a mistake is made. There are no consequences past "Dang, I guess we'll fix that in the next revision." There is nobody shipping back boxes of units and refusing to sell them. Anyone involved with ANY retail product can cite loads of similar stories and expriences.

It is one thing to make and sell 100 units. It is a completely other thing to sell 1,000,000.

Unfortunately, that is not how modern business works in general. You get a certain time frame, a certain amount of resources, a certain amount of money slated for support, and then your project is committed and HAS to follow the plan. You get as many people to test as you can, but it is never enough. (You can argue if it should or should not be this way, but that is a different discussion) When problems happen, there is a decision making process to determine how best to resolved the issues.

It just isn't possible to "simply" decide to not ship a product on time, to decide to fix a bug, or to add in new features. There may be marketing activities already under way, agreements with government agencies or retailers, authors and so on. In short, everybody involved may be impacted. A "simple" *technical* fix for a problem may be possible, but everything else involved may make it nearly impossible.

If there is a bug found in a HP calculator, nearly the first thing that always springs out is "I can't believe this wasn't found. If they'd only done <insert something> they would have found it. That was the first thing I did!" Occasionally, there are people who write things like "For every key more than, say, 50 (keys), turn five HP engineers into frogs and let them be eated (sp) by furious dogs." :-)

Now I am not trying to say that there is not room for improvement. Continual improvement of processes and products is a constant goal. You, as customers, have a right to complain and voice your opinion and I am not trying to say otherwise.

Rather, I hope that you can see the similarities AND possibly imagine the differences with way the very public 34s work progresses. It is very easy to forget about all the competing things pulling on the calculator group.

It is perfectly acceptable to disagree with the direction HP takes the calculator group. It is perfectly acceptable to say that a certain product shouldn't have had "time wasted on it". You are perfectly welcome to do or say what you'd like.

We are all passionate about calculators. That is why it is so hard when a bug is found, or actions are not taken like we'd hope them to be. We, as a group of calculator nuts, tend to be very vocal and loud.

If I were to try and sum up my rambling, it would be thus:

Please just remember that the reasons behind the way things happen are very complex. There are many different factors that go into EVERY decision. Just because something did or didn't happen how you'd hope, or a bug was or wasn't found doesn't mean that there isn't a reason or factor behind it. Decisions are not made on a whim. When something makes you angry or annoyed with the calculator group, try to think a little bit about what might be happening behind the scenes where you might not be able to see.

TW

PS - Not looking for any comments saying "I think you and cyrille are doing a fabulous job" or things like that. Nor am I feeling depressed or "picked on" or anything. I just wanted everyone to consider what you've seen with the VERY PUBLIC wp34s and compare/contrast that with what it might be like being such a tiny organization in a large corporate entity.

--

Although I work for the HP calculator group, the views and comments expressed here are my own.


Edited: 18 Apr 2012, 12:49 a.m. after one or more responses were posted


#60

Well said. I can do naught but agree with everything here.

I worked for nearly a decade in a small hardware & software development team and know all too well the pressures and forces that are likely present, although probably not their true magnitude. I've also learned that writing top quality calculator firmware is far harder than it first appears and the number of borderline cases and weird conditions can seemingly never be fully accounted for.


- Pauli

#61

Quote:
It is one thing to make a sell 100 units. It is a completely other things to sell 1,000,000.

Unfortunately, that is not how modern business works in general. You get a certain time frame, a certain amount of resources, a certain amount of money slated for support, and then your project is committed and HAS to follow the plan. You get as many people to test as you can, but it is never enough. (You can argue if it should or should not be this way, but that is a different discussion) When problems happen, there is a decision making process to determine how best to resolved the issues.


An unfortunate but (at least in my experience) all too
common scenario. An enjoyable hobby pursuit tends to lose
the "enjoyable" aspect if it becomes a commercial undertaking.
The volumes you cite above only multiply that effect.
A pessimistic corollary is no one will pay you to have fun.
Although I'm always searching for an exception to that rule.

#62

Like. :-)

#63

Know that, been there. There's a reason why successful organisations do not grow over a certain size limit.

#64

Without the calculator division WP 34S would have never surfaced. It's no "vs", at least not from our side.

What you see here is "When the WP 34S can fix bugs so easily why can't HP?". You have answered the question in your post yourself, it's just because we are writing software for fun, not for a business, and we don't make hardware except for a few gadgets like overlays or maybe a daughter board for existing hardware. Things get much more involved when you start building your own device (see Eric's work or OpenRPN).

A possible way to please everyone: Continue to build affordable well working hardware, write the software to make it a successful product, sell it to make money, but don't forget those who are never content with an of-the-shelf firmware. Give them all the technical information they need to build their own firmware and let them have fun with their own development. This will not impact your figures but create a whole new audience for your products. I know you have done this in the past, at least once. ;-)

#65

This brings to mind a possible path that the calculator division might take at some future date....

Why not create and sell just the hardware along with an SDK and programming cable? Presumably some people now buy the 20b/30b solely for the purpose of putting the 34s firmware on it. A bare-bones calculator with a USB port, descent size back-lit LCD, nice slant edge click keys all powered by AAA cells could be a big winner. Key labeling would be somewhat of a challenge, but generic key top labels with a provision for easily inscribable overlays might work out fine. Maybe even make the hardware easily hackable for users to put in their own circuits and widen the possible audience.


#66

I bought a couple HP30bs specifically for making them into wp34ss. If HP can be convinced to work with us tinkerers in this regard, here's what I'd like to see:

1) dot-matrix display
2) larger memory
3) more powerful processor
4) redo the overall profile and feel to more resemble that of the
hp35s, but NO directional pad, please, and no extended gap above
the enter key.
5) micro-usb jack for reprogramming and other fun
6) infrared I/O for printer use and other fun
7) screws, at least for holding the case closed
8) easier to pop open the case after the screws are removed
These things would allow for something truly stunning: a sort of supercharged HP42s. Heat stakes are okay and can be worked around by tapping the stubs and putting in screws. But PLEASE don't conceal the access points beneath metal trim as was done with the hp48 series.

#67

1) thru 8) YES!

Edit: I don't have anything against the directional pad, though. Like Pauli, I really don't need more power, but also wouldn't mind if it came with a faster processor. And I'd like to add another wish to the list:

9) re-issue of an infrared printer, or any kind of portable printer, for that matter, connected via microUSB for instance, or WLAN-printing. Or even WLAN connectivity (print and data) to iOS and Android devices.


Edited: 18 Apr 2012, 9:03 a.m.

#68

A more powerful processor?

Surely not, the ARM in the 30b is plenty fast enough for most purposes.


- Pauli


#69

Possibly not more horse power but more RAM and flash space seems worthwhile.


#70

Larger memory is point 2....


- Pauli

#71

Hey, here are the wishlists again. Eight months ahead of X-mas! ;-)

Though I'd concur with most items written in your list, I suggest you can save a lot of work by looking at the archives of e.g. some five years ago - before the WP 34S started.

Quality never runs out of style ;-)

Edited: 18 Apr 2012, 7:16 a.m.

#72

All true.

But.

No customer cares.


All the customer wants is a bug free product. He wants to buy a bug free product. If it happens to be not bug free, he wants it to be fixed. Now. If that can not be fixed now, he wants to know when it will be fixed, not, why it can't be fixed or why that takes so long or why he can't be told if and when it will be fixed.


#73

I fullheartedly concur. BTW, sounds like ISO 9001 ;-)


#74

Quote:
I fullheartedly concur. BTW, sounds like ISO 9001 ;-)

Ugh. ISO 9001 does not require bug free products or even happy customers. All it requires is that there be a documented process for everything, even if the product is garbage and the final answer is to the customer is "get lost."

At least, that has been my experience with implementing various ISO 9000 standards. :(

No ISO standard is a substitute for caring about quality and customers. Combined with that care it can be a handy checkbox item that will open doors. Without that care it still opens doors but means nothing more than i's dotted, t's crossed, and hoops successfully jumped.


#75

Quote:
ISO 9001 does not require bug free products or even happy customers. All it requires is that there be a documented process for everything, even if the product is garbage and the final answer is to the customer is "get lost."

At least, that has been my experience with implementing various ISO 9000 standards.


Sounds like your experience is from the time before 1994 :-( "Customer satisfaction" is *the* keystone of ISO 9001 since then, since the folks who wrote this standard realized that the previous rule 'document what you do then do what you've documented' may lead exactly to what you described in companies just following the text instead of the spirit. A short refresher may help ;-)

#76

I remember ISO9000 efforts from the early 90's. Never thought very much of them. I remember a film we were required to watch about a grocery store somewhere in the NE that achieved the very highest award. A year or two later the owner was thrown in jail for tax evasion and various other nefarious acts. That is what I remember most about my ISO9000 experiences.

Cheers,

-Marwan

#77

Quote:
Sounds like your experience is from the time before 1994 :-( "Customer satisfaction" is *the* keystone of ISO 9001 since then, since the folks who wrote this standard realized that the previous rule 'document what you do then do what you've documented' may lead exactly to what you described in companies just following the text instead of the spirit. A short refresher may help ;-)

Actually 2009 was the last time I was involved in an audit, supposedly to the 2008 standard.

To be fair, the company I was with at the time has superlative customer service/satisfaction, and being a software engineer I may not have been exposed to customer service/satisfaction specific parts of the audit if such existed.

There was definitely nothing in my training prior to the audit nor in any of the audit documents I reviewed, nor in any feedback from the audit which required a quality product or customer satisfaction in order to satisfy the audit.

The standard does require a formal "quality policy" and a process to meet that policy and corrective action (process) to take if necessary. But that quality policy has no objective requirement unless the company decides to impose such on itself. It all sounds great on the surface, and the spirit of the standard seems to be in the best of intentions, but in practice it seems that good companies do well, and poor companies can easily game the system and be certified.


#78

Quote:
The standard does require a formal "quality policy" and a process to meet that policy and corrective action (process) to take if necessary. But that quality policy has no objective requirement unless the company decides to impose such on itself. It all sounds great on the surface, and the spirit of the standard seems to be in the best of intentions, but in practice it seems that good companies do well, and poor companies can easily game the system and be certified.

Sad but true. Like 'marriage is what you make it' also the ISO 9001 often works this way in real life. It all boils down to this: If you (r company) need(s) just the certificate, buy it in India or Sicily (no offense intended) - if you (r company) want(s) to improve, follow the spirit of the ISO 9001 and shoot every auditor who wants you doing something for sake of said standard only. After all, the base of ISO 9001 is simply common sense (TM). And so far nobody could ever show me a requirement of said ISO being pointless in 15 years - many of its requirements have to be translated, however, into common language. This needs some brainwork not everyone is willing to invest, and some sense for sustainable development colliding head-on with thinking in quarterly figures.

Just my 20m€ as usual, however.

Edited: 30 Apr 2012, 12:26 a.m.

#79

Quote:
All true.

But.

No customer cares.

All the customer wants is a bug free product. He wants to buy a bug free product. If it happens to be not bug free, he wants it to be fixed. Now. If that can not be fixed now, he wants to know when it will be fixed, not, why it can't be fixed or why that takes so long or why he can't be told if and when it will be fixed.


Absolutely agree.

The firm that is selling you the goods won't accept any arguments whatsoever re why the customers cannot pay the price they ask for their product but can offer instead a bunch of perfectly sound reasons why they regrettably have to pay less than asked for it. That's a simple business fact of life.

In the same vein, the customers don't want to hear any reasons why the product they're buying has this or that bug and/or why they can't or won't tell you if and when the bug will be ironed out or not.

The one and only thing the customers will care for is that the customers have paid perfectly good, bugless money in the asked amount and thus rightly want a perfectly good, bugless product fulfilling the specs.

Simple as that.

Regards from V.


#80

Quote:
...and thus rightly want a perfectly good, bugless product...

Valentin, please let us know when you find that "perfectly good, bugless product." (And by the way, which currently-available scientific programmable calculator would that be?)

A perfect product can certainly be a *goal*, but any reasonable person understands that there are many limitations. Especially if you want to run a business, and that business sells a complex hand-held computer.

Bruce.


#81

Bruce, you would expect, however, perfect bugless money without any reduction for your real world product, wouldn't you? Sounds a little bit unbalanced though ...


#82

Walter:

IMO, it is a straw-man argument. It is not a question of whether the money is "bugless" (of course it is), it is a matter of how much money, and whether the product is offered for sale at all!

If consumers truly demanded perfectly-designed and bug-free calculators from HP, we would be left with two possible outcomes: (1) the newest scientific programmable calculator from HP would cost $2000, or (2) HP stops making calculators, because it realizes that it can never bring a product to market at a profit.

Bruce.


#83

Bruce,

Probably you're not aware of, but we had this discussion here more than once. Taking the so-called scientific sector, there is certainly a big market for backpack calculators for students (both kinds ;-) ), mainly reigned by TI and CASIO. But there's also a market for serious scientific instruments - a market HP once held a big share of - with elevated prices corresponding to higher quality (reliability, accuracy, etc.). A significant fraction of the forum members were (and probably still are) willing to buy in this second market, provided there's a reasonable price / quality ratio AFAIK.

Walter


#84

True. Unfortunately the members of this forum can not support a such a design and development effort on their own and there are simply too many people that are driven primarily or entirely by cost. Where we care about, and are willing to pay for, quality many others are driven solely by price. It probably shows in everything else we buy as well. For example, the same holds true for me in cars, computers, bicycles, and various other items--I choose the best or at least the best price/performance ratio that I can afford.

Cheers,

-Marwan

#85

Quote:
Valentin, please let us know when you find that "perfectly good, bugless product." (And by the way, which currently-available scientific programmable calculator would that be?)

I do *own* many perfectly good, essentially bugless products but even if that were impossible, which it isn't, the following step is for the seller, who has taken good, bugless money, to take the necessary measures to correct those bugs with absolutely no further expense to the customers suffering them, and to keep said customers duly informed on when said bugs will be removed or else their money refunded.

Actually, nothing of this seems important to some firms and many a customer is more than fed up with being (ab)used as an unwilling beta-tester after duly paying for the "privilege".

I *do* have customers, large firms in fact, which expect a perfect service for their perfect millions, and by golly that's what they get or you're both in court and out of business.

Regards from V.


#86

Hi Valentín, it's always a pleasure to hear from you.

While I agree with you about bugless products (for instance, some of HP calculators and products from the 1975-1985 period are almost bugless in my opinion), there is some truth on the "good-enough quality" approach to software, as long as the defects are not critical and that such "quality" goes hand-on-hand with true user functionality improvements, low cost, and timely availability. That said, I also think manufacturers should stand behind their products and, for cases like the HP 15 Limited, commit themselves to fix the bugs in a reasonable timeframe, which should be made public in advance.

Just my AR$ 0.10


#87

Quote:
Hi Valentín, it's always a pleasure to hear from you.

Hi, Andres ! Same here, it's always a pleasure to read your posts, and thanks for your kind words.

Quote:
That said, I also think manufacturers should stand behind their products and, for cases like the HP 15 Limited, commit themselves to fix the bugs in a reasonable timeframe, which should be made public in advance.

Agreed. I can understand (not justify) that some obscure bugs still remain (unnoticed) in some released product, and I put the emphasis on "obscure".

But when some utterly normal, plain vanilla, basic functionality that gets frequent use is nevertheless broken and everyone and their uncle notices it at once except for the firm's Q&A Dept., which obviously never ever bothered to use the function even once or else they'd immediately realized its brokennes, then that's something I can neither justify nor understand.

Most especially when said firm absolutely ignores user's complaints and neither fixes the bug outright nor publicly commits to fix it in the foreseeable future, let alone refunding the money.

Best regards from V.


#88

If you buy a pair of trousers from Brooks Brothers for $60, even though they be made in China, should you find a defect, Brooks will refund or exchange to make your transaction whole...

#89

I do agree, for instance in the case of the HP 15L "Pause" bug and also if its power-supply design is not appropriate for a programmable calculator which can exhaust its batteries running a program with risk of loss of data (not verified by myself, it was discussed in this forum some time ago).

In reference to "Good-Enough Quality": There was an interesting article by James Bach in the August 1997 issue of IEEE Computer magazine. Regrettably, I'm not authorized to copy it; but perhaps those of you who are interested may find it elsewhere (or buy it from IEEE).

Bach states that a non-bugfree product may be shipped, according to GEQ principles, if it a) Has sufficient benefits (for instance, in comparison against older products); b) Has no critical errors (plain wrong answers or data loss may be some of these); c) The benefits sufficiently outweigh the problems; and d) If, all things considered (including time and costs), possible improvements will cause more harm than benefit.

It's an interesting framework to realistically assess software quality in current products; even if you not fully agree.


#90

And, by the way, money is far from bug-less nowadays... (al least, as a reserve of value instrument, I mean).


#91

Boy, isn't that the sad truth (speaking for USD)!


#92

Well, our currency (AR$) holds many records as a bad means to preserve value. If accountants and economists are ever to use scientific notation with large exponents, and to apply complex numbers for their chores, it will surely be here. A real shame, something not to be proud of at all.


#93

Not even close to the records :-)

- Pauli


#94

Well, we have had something like a "periodic hyperinflation" with a repetition period of some 10-11 years. So the instantaneous, peak rate may seem not as high, but the cummulative effect has been important indeed. From 1968 to 1992 our currency was adjusted by a 10E13 factor; and from time to time we feel as bracing for a crash landing as the next wave may be about to came. Nowadays we are in a period of artificially maintained "not so large inflation", in the order of 25% annual rate; but that is a matter of concern for many of us here.


#95

This may explain how it was possible for me to have a custom-made charango built and sent from Argentina, for less than $300!

#96

Quote:
All the customer wants is a bug free product.

Not me. I want a product that bug-free enough to be useful. Perhaps that is because I am a SW engineering nothing I've ever shipped has been bug free...

#97

Tim:

I certainly understand, and agree with everything you wrote.

The only thing that I---as a frequent HP-calculator customer---would ask, is that the HP-calculator engineers push-back against management decisions that lead to sub-par products. Please take every opportunity to remind HP management of HP's proud calculator heritage, and that such hard-earned customer loyalty and trust should not be lightly tossed aside. Once lost, those customers are are likely difficult to regain...

As I become an aging engineer, I have come to the realization that the battle between upper-level management (maximize short-term profit at any cost) and engineering (maximize product quality at any cost) is a good thing. The problem is that in today's world, if the engineers had the final say on product features and when the product was ready for release, the company would collapse from a lack of sales and profit (always waiting until the perfectly-designed product functioned perfectly; in many cases there *is* such a thing as "good enough"). But on the other hand, we've seen all too many examples of what happens when the balance of power shifts toward upper-management's short-term-profit goal (we get companies that are nothing more than a "brand", and then they disappear). So, the struggle is a reasonable one, but we engineers must never abrogate our responsibility to push for better products, with an eye toward a lasting customer-company relationship.

My two cents,

Bruce.


#98

Bruce,

i second your opinion.

hpnut (aging engineer from Malaysia)

#99

It is my experience that publicly traded corporations do not have continuous memory. None exists past the last quarter. That somewhat dulls the effort to uphold historic goals. The trolls in accounting rule everything.

Quote:
... that is not how modern business works in general.


we all know that, that's why we are here expecting HP to do something more than "modern business" - like mr. Hewlett and mr. Packard did to make the brand "HP" famous.

In my view, the difference between the wp34s and the calculator group is that when the calculator group is planning to bring a product to the market, they must at some point freeze the specs. They must design the hardware and write the software to meet the specs, then it must be tested against the specs, with the knowledge hopefully gained from previous products and experiences.

The wp34s is aiming at a constantly moving target and has no prior experience in this field.

Expectations are (rightly) vastly different.

If I buy a simple 4-banger for around a buck to keep in my car, I don't care if I have to be a bit careful pressing the keys. If I spend upwards of $100 then (maybe I'm just selfish) I expect to not have to disassemble the keyboard and clean it out before it works.

I happen to work in a manufacturing environment. Stuff happens. We make good on it if it does.


Some perspective, for ALL of us. As a college student in the late 70's, I paid $100 for a TI-58c. The HP's were out of my price range. Some of you older guys who already had jobs, though, plunked down a month's pay to get an HP calculator that you used daily for years and years. Yes, manufacturing costs have come down with mass production, but software engineering costs have certainly not. Are you willing to plunk down a month's pay today for a truly well-built calculator? How about a week's pay? Two day's pay? We pay $20k or $30k for a new car which loses $2k in value its first year, and don't think much about it. We will have that car for maybe 10 years. If there was a market for a top-quality, fairly bug-free, $500 calculator, we could afford it now better than we could back then and HP would be making it. But the market isn't there, because we have been conditioned to think that $100 is a lot for a quality calculator. Look at all the labor that has gone into developing the WP34s software. If everyone who worked on it was on payroll, it would be a very expensive calculator. Fortunately, we can have the top-shelf WP34s without having to pay that cost.


Quote:
Fortunately, we can have the top-shelf WP34s without having to pay that cost.

Donations are still open. :-)

To be honest, I've had the time to spent and it was very well spent on the project. But even if you do not account for the combined work of the team members the material and software costs alone have long not been covered.


It occurs to me that we WP-34s owners who have not contributed significant time or money, have a moral obligation to fully fund this type of work (at least covering the developers' reasonably-related out-of-pocket expenses)! I, for one, just decided to continue donating over time.

I would ask the MoHPC forum readers to ask themselves (and honestly answer) this question: If the WP-34s had been released by HP as the HP-43s, how much would you have been willing to pay HP for such a calculator? Shouldn't you be willing to spend that much to encourage this kind of development? Search your soul and your wallet; vote with your dollars!

A reinvigorated HP-calculator fan,

Bruce.


Quote:
If the WP-34s had been released by HP as the HP-43s, how much would you have been willing to pay HP for such a calculator?
18 EUR, as I've paid for the 30b. Why not more? Just because I have to assume ending up with a buggy calculator w/o update service.

When getting my 32SII, I found at least a notice about the fraction bug, and that calculator was less expensive than my 35s, which still sells unmodified and I bet without the known buglist.

Offering firmware updates and information about bugs for current calculators is now essential for me to pay a premium price for a HP calculator again.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me ;-(.


I think Bruce's question reads a bit different:

Quote:
If the WP-34s (with the service you experienced for some months now) had been released by HP as the HP-43s, how much would you have been willing to pay HP for such a calculator?

Well ... ummmh ... I admit I'm related to the development team ;-)

Walter, I'm interpreting it in the same sense that Thomas does it: Would a HP 43s be released right now by HP I wouldn't even pay the 18€ I payed for my to-be-converted HP 30b, based on the experience with the HP 15c LE.

On the other hand, if 'The Team' would professionally release the WP 34s, I would gladly pay the 100€ I payed for the 15C LE! 150€ if it came with factory made keys, faceplate, crystal and IR diode installed.

Edited: 25 Apr 2012, 6:34 a.m.

Quote:
[...] with the service you experienced for some months now [...]
That hasn't happened at HP for years now, and Tim arguing with some hidden reasons for it doesn't make me feel like it would change any time soon. As much as I understand that you can't change the course of the Titanic in no time, I'd really like to see someone approaching the wheel. Until then, I must consider every new HP calculator being unreliable and thus the question as you stated it as being too far away from reality to even think about it.

Thomas,

du reißt Bruces Frage aus ihrem Zusammenhang. Bitte schau dir nochmal seinen Beitrag an. Niemand will, dass du an HP spendest ;-)

(For our unilingual readers: small hint for clarification.)


Walter, I know you directed your hint at Thomas, but I will nevertheless chime in. ;-)

I, for one, would pay HP only a few € for the same WP-34s that I offered your team a much larger amount as stated above. The reason being that I would expect to be left standing in the rain by HP with a buggy calculator, but I know for sure I would get top update service from you. (I think Thomas thought along the same lines.)

Edited: 25 Apr 2012, 8:20 a.m.

Walter, eine rethorische Frage kann man, den belehrenden Charakter ignorierend, durchaus wörtlich nehmen und beantworten. In diesem Fall verschaffte meine Antwort meinem Unmut Luft, wenn vielleicht auch an unpassender Stelle.

Was euer Projekt betrifft: Ich sähe hier keinen Grund, nicht dafür zu bezahlen. Was mich (wirklich nur mich) abschreckt, sind die Klebchen (ich mag schon das 'Originalklebchen' auf dem 30b nicht mehr sehen) und der frühe Entwicklusstatus des Projekts.

Ok?


Thomas,

schon OK, nur immer an den Rhetor denken ;-) Was die kleinen Klebeschildchen betrifft: wenn HP nicht so abschreckende Preise dafür hätte, hätten wir längst zumindest die weißen Symbole auf die Tasten drucken lassen. Allein, die Welt ist anders ... :-/

Regarding the small stickers you're complaining about: if HP didn't show such *abhorrent* prices for custom keys, we'd have the white keytop labels printed for long at least. But the real world continues deviating from our wishes ... :-/

Walter


It's obviously already a problem to sell cables and have firmware updates available from the website, and you ask for a custom painting at a reasonable price! ;-)

Yeah, internal reasons ...

Wow... I had no idea of the ambiguousness of what I wrote!

Yes, Walter's interpretation is correct; what I *meant* to say was: If HP were to release an HP-43s, before the WP-34s was ever conceived, but that calculator was exactly the same calculator that we now have in the WP-34s, what would you have paid?

Or, how about this: Imagine HP *did* make an HP-43s in 1993, but never released it. Say they made 1,000,000 units, but these units went into storage and were never sold. And say that this calculator had all the functionality of our current WP-34s. Now, if HP were to release these calculators today---as "new old stock"---what would you be willing to pay for one today?

My answer is: more than I paid for my 15cLE! Therefore, *I* have decided that I have a moral obligation to donate more, to encourage the individual sacrifices that have made this wonderful machine possible! That is my own conclusion. I just wanted to spur others here---who are as excited about the WP-34s as I am---to think about it (and hopefully act). In my opinion, the WP-34s development team deserves the same monetary reward that I would have given HP, had they produced the WP-34s that I now hold in my hand. Food for thought! ;-)

Thanks,

Bruce.


To me, the text still reads the same, except for the given date. I don't know how to read it in any other way as word by word.

If HP were to release an HP-43s, before the WP-34s was ever conceived, but that calculator was exactly the same calculator that we now have in the WP-34s, what would you have paid?

It was well after the 35s desaster, so my answer would be the same. I've bought two *new* calculators for very little money, and only gave about $95 for the 15C LE because I falsly assumed not much could go wrong with using a proven firmware.

Walter added something and brought *service* into play. Ok, that's another story.

Now, your *intention* with that question is a whole different story. I told Walter, unfortunately in german, that I too think support is necessary and well deserved for users *enjoying* the WP34S, but this calculator is not for me, and thus I didn't mentioned it my earlier post.


Thomas:

You wrote:

Quote:
...this calculator is not for me,...

And that's fine. As I tried to make clear in my second post:

Quote:
I just wanted to spur others here---who are as excited about the WP-34s as I am---to think about it (and hopefully act).

Bruce.


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