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rohde

Graphing calculator

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I''m uncertain about which graphing calculator to buy. Do any of you have any experience/advice on the subject? I''m thinking about the HP 48GXN...any good? -+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+- Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.

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I''ve had an HP 48g for 6 years now. I used it in my high school math courses, and my college engineering courses. I really like it, especially RPN. I find it very difficult to use non-RPN calculators now, as I am so much faster using RPN.

Anyway, I HIGHLY recommend that line of calculators. If you have any specific questions, let me know. I''ve done a lot of programming with user-rpl =)

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The TI-89 is really good. It can do a ton of things.

------------------------------
BASIC programmers don''t die, they just GOSUB and don''t return.

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The TI-86 is probably the most advanced calculator you''re allowed to use on the ACT/SAT, so if you''re in high school, I would probably recommend that, as it will most certainly get you through HS and most of college. If you get an 89, or that HP you will not be able to use it on the ACT/SAT.

-timiscool999
"I like waffles. Especially with syrup." -me

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I recommend the Texas Instruments TI-30Xa SOLAR. It's not a graphics calculator but a scientific calculator. I study math in college and from my experience a person doesn’t need a better calculator then that one.

Here is a link: http://www.shoplet.com/office/db/g13550.html
You can get it for like 12$


[edited by - axodoss on July 7, 2003 4:06:35 PM]

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Here''s a simple example of why you should get a calculator with rpn:
Say you want to calculate (3+4)*(3+8)*(7+9)
It takes me about 1 second to enter this into my HP, because I can use a stack. I press
3 enter 4 + 3 enter 8 + 7 enter 9 + * *

I can keep the intermediate results of the first two additions on the stack while I calculate the other numbers. This prevents me from having to add parenthesis.
If you aren''t using rpn, you''d have to calculate this like
( 3 + 4 ) * ( 3 + 8 ) * ( 7 + 9 )
It''s more characters, and you have weird ones(like parenthesis, which have to match). Furthermore, one mistake in any part and you have to recalculate the entire expression, whereas with a stack you can see intermediate results. And you can undo. And you can recall old values you entered.

Here''s another cool example. Let''s say you''re doing a physics lab. You are trying to calculate one forumula repeatedly on a bunch of input data. Well the HP lets you operate on lists, so you can enter the data as a list:
{ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 }
and operate on it as a whole
3 *
which produces
{ 3 6 9 12 15 18 21 24 27 }

Furthermore, the programming language of the HP 48 g series is RPL - reverse polish lisp, which is a combination of Lisp, reverse polish notation, and forth. It is surprisingly effective, and interfaces well with the rest of the calculator. Remember all those threads about c++ vs lisp? Well, TIs use BASIC! What would you rather program in, BASIC or a variant of Lisp? I have found that it is extremely easy to write programs once you get used to the all the keywords - which the HP exposes through a programming menu to ease development. And, there are even basic elements of a windowing system you can use - message boxes, selection boxes, input text fields, and more.

Complex numbers are built into the 48 series, and are extremely easy to use. It is trivial to convert between rectangular and polar notation(press a button), and complex numbers work just like everything else. So are matrices and vectors.

It can graph quite well too =)

If you want more info, check out the HP faq, or just ask away.

In case you can''t tell, I love my HP. I''ve used casios, TIs, and HPs. And by far my favorite is the HP 48 series.

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I like my TI-83 There are probably better ones though, but make sure you don''t get one you can''t use on tests.

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quote:
Original post by timiscool999 If you get an 89, or that HP you will not be able to use it on the ACT/SAT.



Have they changed the rules? I''m pretty sure I was allowed to use my 48g on the SAT. I thought you could use any calculator as long as it didn''t have a qwerty keyboard, or a printer.

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quote:
Original post by sjelkjd
quote:
Original post by timiscool999 If you get an 89, or that HP you will not be able to use it on the ACT/SAT.



Have they changed the rules? I''m pretty sure I was allowed to use my 48g on the SAT. I thought you could use any calculator as long as it didn''t have a qwerty keyboard, or a printer.



No symbolical calculators or anything that has the capability of solving differential equation for you.

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Wow, thanks for all the replies.

I'm at university so I don't need to worry so much about being able to use it at tests.

I have an older HP (32SII) so I'm used to the RPN. My older brother has a great TI though so that's why I'm kinda uncertain about whether to go with HP (which I trust) or try a new thing with TI.

I'm mainly gonna use it for differential equations/calclulus and the graphing ability is very important as well.

But I don't know where HP and TI excels.

EDIT: Grammar.

-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.

[edited by - rohde on July 7, 2003 4:45:10 PM]

[edited by - rohde on July 7, 2003 4:45:37 PM]

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I''ve been very happy with the graphing capabilites of my HP 48g. Just to give you an idea, it supports single variable, polar, parametrix, diff eq, conic, truth, histogram, bar, scatter, slopefield, wireframe, ps-coutour, gridmap, y-slice, and pr-surface plots. You can trace these plots, change the domain, super-impose two plots, find roots, check the slope at a point, shade under or above, take the area of a section(which can be marked graphically), draw the tangent line, and zoom. Also, the plotter can be fed data from other programs you write, so you can automatically generate a bunch of plots on some input set.

It can numerically integrate fairly well. I haven''t ever used the symbolic integration, though supposedly it can do that as well. If you want symbolic integration though, I''d get the TI-92(which is a monster at symbolic integration). It can integrate, differentiate, isolate variable, solve quadratics, and manipulate expressions all symbolically. I haven''t played with the differential equation solving at all, but it supports that as well.

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Only on the ACT''s are you not allowed to use a TI89 which has a symbolic algebra system. Otherwise, you are golden for the SAT''s, AP''s, and SATII''s

Brendan

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I bought (back in the day) a Scientific/Programmable/Graphing Casio, except the graph screen was so small it looked like your typical $15 sci calc. I got to use it on all my tests since noone thought it could graph. LOL.

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I recommend the TI-89

The e-book program that you can download off of ticalc.org can view any of your custom made e-books. Great for re-reading the Opengl Red Book on long trips.

By the way, can you really use the TI-89 on the SATs, or am I going to have to buy a TI-83+?

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I was required to buy a Casio 9850G for a Calculus class. It was bundled with the book, and the book had sections at the end of each chapter (or just about each chapter) that had exercises and examples for that particular calculator. I had no problems with it, and its text capabilities came in useful during Chemistry tests.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
quote:
Original post by sjelkjd
If you want symbolic integration though, I''d get the TI-92(which is a monster at symbolic integration). It can integrate, differentiate, isolate variable, solve quadratics, and manipulate expressions all symbolically. I haven''t played with the differential equation solving at all, but it supports that as well.


Just so you know, a TI-89 is a TI-92 in a different case. I''d reccomend the TI-89, I''m a senior majoring in math, and I can''t count the number of times the TI-89''s symbolic manipulation (particularly integration/differentiation) have saved my ass.

If you''re doing anything like Calculus or more complex (DiffEQ etc...) a TI-89 is what I''d reccomend.

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Purely scientific calculators are boring. My TI-83+ got me through the most boring lectures in my college. Playing games & such.

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I have experience with the TI-89 and the HP 4x models. I would reccomend using the TI calculator; it is much easier to use has more features, and in my experience, has everything the HPs have and more.

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I don''t like the 86. The can do pretty much everything the 86 can do (if not built in then there are programs for it). I''d say go with the 83 or 89.

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