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Topics - critor

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196
Other Calculators / mViewer - Nspire BMP viewer
« on: December 12, 2010, 09:53:27 pm »
mViewer is my BMP viewer for Ndless 1.7.



The code is based on the demo b JayTe that was published on TI-Bank for Goplat's emulator allmost a year ago.
It also includes some come from Levak (zoom).


Of course nothing very impressing... you allready have such a tool in another topic.


But if I tell you that:

* you can browse the whole filesystem (you can put the reader and the bitmaps in different folders)

* you can scroll while viewing the image (yes, you're not limited to the screen dimensions any more)

* you can zoom in/out on the image (keys: * / )

* you can set the constrat while viewing the image (keys: + -)

* you can open any BMP file:
- included support for 1/2/4/8/16/24/32 bits images
- included support of RGB/RGBA/RGBAX encoding (yes, 'Alpha' is supported - 'X' is ignored)
- included support for BITFIELD mode (specified RGBAX)
- included support for raw or RLE-compressed data


What do you say ?

197
Other Calculators / TI-83+ overclocking
« on: December 10, 2010, 12:33:33 pm »
Many pages about the TI-83+ overclocking mention to replace the C11 capacitor.


But what is rarely stated, is that it is only for very old TI-83+ with the "TI-83(F)" or "9TA837MB-30B" PCB.
The ASIC used is the TI REF 9815455.
Known hardware revisions: A, D.
Date: 1999-2001.
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PLUS_I-0799_PCB.jpg

But since then, the TI-83+ PCB has completly changed.


There are:

* The "TI-83(A)", "9TA83ASMB-31G" or "TG0837CRMB-2422" PCB.
The ASIC used is the Inventec 6SI837
Hardware revisions: C, D, E.
Date: 2002-2004.
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PLUS_S0402C_PCB.jpg
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PLUS_S0504E_PCB.jpg

* The "GARGOYLE-C08" PCB.
The ASIC and hardware revisions are unknown.
Date: 2007.
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PLUS_TBL_PCB.jpg

* The "TG73-83MB-2430" or "TG73-83MB-2432" PCB.
The ASIC used is the TI-REF TI-738X (220C080FG102)
Hardware revisions: K, L
Date: 2007-2008
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PLUS_FR07_BL_PCB.jpg
http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PlusFR_PCB.jpg


Does anybody know if the capacitor was ever found for the recent TI-83+ PCB ?
It's quite hard to find the informations on Google... Most of the returned URL are about the basic TI-83 overclocking...

This information could be usefull for the TI-73, TI-82Stats.fr and TI-76.fr too, as they are sharing the same ASIC.

198
Other Calculators / Let's draw on the TI-Nspire!
« on: December 06, 2010, 06:56:51 pm »
Drawing on the TI-Nspire screen without using Ndless...
And if it was possible?...


What do you think of this:

199
Other Casio Calculators / fx-9750Gii / Graph 35+USB upgrade
« on: November 17, 2010, 06:15:08 pm »
Remember I wanted to upgrade the cheap TI-82Stats/76.fr (= TI-83) with a great TI-83+ OS ?
http://ourl.ca/7922

I couldn't do it up to now, but...


I have managed a similar upgrade with Casio! ;D
Just upgrade your cheap Graph 35+USB / fx-9750Gii (= TI-83) with a great Graph 85/75 / fx-9860G/Gii OS (=TI-84+SE).

In fact, the Graph 35+USB / fx-9750Gii have a 4Mb Flash ROM.
But the installed OS doesn't provide any archive memory, and doesn't accept applications.
And officially, there is no official software to flash an OS on that model.

After flashing the model with one of the OSes mentionned above, you get:
* archive memory support! (1.5Mb)
* application support!

The hack is simple (long but simple).
No hardware modification -> no special tools needed -> free updrade.


Could some french-speaking people check and try to upgrade their Graph 35+USB / fx-9750Gii ?

http://casio.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=archives&ac=voir&id=127


I'll post a news once the tutorial will have been tested.

Thanks.


Let's all migrate to Casio! Much more upgradable calculators!


(if you have a cheap scientific fx-82ES / fx-83ES / fx-85ES / fx-92 Coll├Ęge 2D calculator, you may also try this tutorial in order to upgrade it with a simple pencil -> http://casio.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=archives&ac=voir&id=93 )

200
Other Calculators / Upgrading the TI-82Stats.fr / TI-76.fr
« on: November 15, 2010, 07:06:24 pm »
The TI-82Stats.fr and TI-76.fr are 2 cheap graphic calculators available in France.


They include a 256Kb TI-83 compatible OS translated in french.
(TI-Connect detects them as TI-83 calculators - TI-83 assembly programs are working on them - and the dumped ROMs can be used with any TI-83 emulator)

But those calculators become quite interesting when you look at the PCB:
TI-76.fr: http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-76FR_PCB.jpg
TI-82Stats.fr: http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-82STATS_FR_P0509G_PCB.jpg

1st big surprise, unlike TI-83 calculators they don't have a 256Kb EPROM, but a 512Kb FlashROM.
The FlashROM is either a Spansion S29AL004D70 either a MX29LV400, which are both pin compatible and used in recent TI-73 and TI-83+ calculators.

2nd big surprise, the CPU/ASIC is a TI-REF TI-738X, which is also used in recent TI-73 and TI-83+ calculators.

So, the TI-76.fr and TI-82Stats.fr PCB are very similar to recent TI-73 or TI-83+ PCB:
TI-73: http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-73_P0803G_PCB.jpg
TI-83+: http://www.datamath.org/Graphing/Images/TI-83PlusFR_PCB.jpg


So, my goal is to develop a simple way to flash a TI-83+ or TI-73 OS in those calculators.
I'm posting my discoveries, hoping that you will be able to help me.


I've checked the connections between the FlashROM and the ASIC chips on the TI-76.fr and TI-82Stats.fr. Here is what I have up to now:

Legend:
In black, pins not connected to the PCB circuit.
In white,grounded pins.
Connected pins are in the same color.





As FloppusMaximus had noticed, the flash-write pin WE# is connected to the ASIC.
So from the hardware side, the ROM can be flashed.

The highest flash address pin, A17, is grounded. So you cannot accesss the full 512Kb bytes, but only the 1st 256Kb bytes.

Checking in a recent TI-83+, I could find the matching A17 pin on the ASIC.
You just have to:
- disconnect A17 flash pin from ground
- connect A17 flash pin to A17 ASIC pin



Now, from the hardware-side, the full 512Kb bytes can be accessed.


Unfortunately, I haven't managed to trigger any boot code menu using the ON+DEL key.

To my knowledge, the 256Kb dump file is a standard TI-83 OS. That means:
- no boot code
- no functions to write the flash
- impossible to access more than 256Kb ROM

So, I cannot even dump the hidden 256kb to check for a boot code...


So I'm asking for the help of the best TI-83/83+ programmers/hackers out there.

How could we manage to flash a TI-83+ boot code and then a TI-83+ OS ?


I also have some questions:

- How is it possible for the same ASIC to be able to run both TI-83 and TI-83+ OSes ?
I thought that many ports were behaving differently on those calculators...
How are the ports behaviors set up ?

- How is it possible for the same ASIC to be able to boot with or without a boot code?
TI-83+ calculators have a boot code in the last 16Kb sector of the ROM...
To my knowledge, there is no such boot code in the 256Kb TI-82Stats.fr / TI-76.fr dump files, and even if such a boot code was written higher in ROM, it could not be accessed before moding the calculator as explained above.


If we manage to come out with a not to complicated mod, many french students will be very happy.

Please, help me.

201
Other Calculators / Connect-to-Class 1.4 link
« on: November 12, 2010, 04:42:25 pm »
If you've got at least 2 TI-Nspire, it might be interesting to try the Connect-to-Class software.

It's the teacher software which lets you operate severall TI-Nspire simultaneously, wether they are on a wired network (USB) or a WiFi network (TI-Nspire Navigator).


TI secretly hosts it on ti.com. Here is it, version 1.4.0.539:
http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=archives&ac=voir&id=1992
(linked from ti.com)

And it was quite hard to find that link... So, enjoy it while you can! :D

202
Other Calculators / CAS+ dumping / flashing / Ndlessing
« on: November 07, 2010, 07:40:41 am »
This topic is about jailbreaking the TI-Nspire CAS+ with OS 1.0.554.

Crossposting from TI-Bank and UTI, in case anyone can help with ideas or tests.



I have done some tests for months by my side. Here are my results so far:


1)a) Calculator "Send OS":

The "Send OS" menu is disabled.
Even when you connect the calculator to a computer, to a TI-Nspire/Nspire CAS, or even to another TI-Nspire CAS+.

According to tests I had asked for to Datamath, the "Send OS" menu was enabled on previous CAS+ OSes (1.0.4xx, 1.0.3xx). But I've never seen those older prototypes anywhere outside  the Datamath museum.


1)b) Calculator file architecture:

According to a basic link tool I've developped:

The CAS+ doesn't understand ".." folder
It has no "/phoenix" folder.

Visible folders are only:
"/"
"/phx"
"/phx/documents"
"/phx/tmp"

And nothing interesting in those folders.

So, the OS is not visible in the filesystem.

Notice: with so few files, the systems reports 5.9Mb used in the 27.8Mb Flash file system... Where are those Mb?...


2) Maintenance menu:

Do not try menu+enter+p. It doesn't show a menu, but does remove the OS.


3) Diagnostic menu:

I haven't managed to trigger the diagnostic menu.
With Esc+Menu+G, the calculator just doesn't turn on until you remove the batteries... Strange...


4) Ndless 1.4/1.7:

Great news! Trying to install Ndless 1.4/1.7 crashes the calculator!

You can still move the pointer and turn the calculator off and on.
But that's all.
All other keys seem useless...
And except about the pointer, the screen is not updated and seems frozen: no "low battery" or "low ressources" indicator flashing, no control key flag...

Seems the main program/OS loop is crashed/stucked, but that interrupts are still working.

It would be great to try to install Ndless 1.0/1.1/1.1.1...


5) Computer "Send OS":

The TI-Nspire Computer Link 1.0 looks for ".tnc" OS update files.
If a CAS+ calculator is connected, you immediatly get a "bad file" error when trying to flash the 1.1 CAS OS, or even the 1.1 OS renamed from ".tno" to ".tnc".

I've used a Java decompiler. The sources were not 100% ok (won't compile again - syntax errors), but here is what I have understood about the "Send OS" code. Note, I might be wrong.

- I think the ".tnc" file is not sent to the calculator.
- The ".tnc" file is decompressed on the computer in a temporary folder.
- All included files are sent one by one to the CAS+ in the "/phx/tmp" folder.
- The code checks that you've sent a ".img" file, and a "manifest_img" file.
- Then, the code calls a native method installOS() with the calculator pathes of both above files.

I've made various tests by sending such files to the "/phx/tmp" folder, but the native installOS() just triggers a "Bad File" exception without telling me anything more.

Notice: even after sending severall Mb of data in the "/phx/tmp" folder, the free space remains unchanged.


That's all for today.


I've got 2 identical TI-Nspire CAS+.
If you've got any idea of other interesting tests, just tell me.



What would be interesting to do with the CAS+ is:
- installing Ndless 1.0/1.1/1.1.1
- installing Ndless 1.4/1.7
- dumping/reflashing the 1.0 OS
- dumping the 1.0 boot2
- flashing a 1.1 OS
- flashing a 1.1 boot2

203
News / OS 2.1 major bug
« on: November 05, 2010, 04:30:40 pm »
TI-Bank has newsed about a bug with OS 2.1, which permanently freezes you TI-Nspire basic ClickPad if you've got boot2 1.1.

http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=news&ac=commentaires&id=882

If you've owned your calculator for a while and already installed OS 1.4 or newer, you probably have boot2 1.4 and aren't concerned by the problem.

But if you've just bought your calculator, it may come with boot2 1.1...
And when you connect it to your computer, that stupid TI-Nspire Computer Link tells you to install OS 2.1...
Some minutes later, your TI-Nspire is totally useless.

This is a major bug that many Nspire owners most likely ran into since July, when OS 2.1 came out.

204
Other Calc-Related Projects and Ideas / Nspire LCD mod - we need it!
« on: October 08, 2010, 05:34:24 pm »
Soon, thanks to Ndless 1.7, we're going to have ASM support on the TI-Nspire with an OS which is also usable to work/study!
You won't have to choose any more...
You won't have to constantly upgrade/downgrade any more each time your needs vary...

Wonderfull,isn't it?

 
Well... There's another major big problem, and I would like it to be discussed here, and solved if possible.

We've got many games on the TI-Nspire (NES games, Game Boy games, Game Boy Color games...) but a large majority of them is unplayable without catching a headache!


Here is THE problem:

(all images in this post come from datamath.org)

Yes, the screen!
Because of its high remanence delay, we just can't play any game which updates the screen widely.

An you just can't hope for a better screen from TI... They perfectly know it's the last thing that is preventing us from playing fully with the Nspire.

Does that mean we are condemned to play classic board games like chess or checkers?...
Does that mean we are condemned to play games which will have lower graphics than TI-89/92/V200 games?


Then... we have to solve the problem.

The screen has a standard resolution of 320x240.
That's a good thing if we need to replace it!


The screen comes on a separate PCB.
That could have been a good thing, but those PCBs aren't just dedicated to the screen.
They take care of the exam LED, of the mini-usb plug, and of the rechargeable battery.
So it seems we'll have to keep those PCB, and cannot easily replace them...

Let's look at those PCBs:

non-CAS ClickPad:


CAS ClickPad:


non-CAS TouchPad:


CAS TouchPad:



ClickPad CAS and non-CAS PCBs are identical, except that the exam LED is not soldered on the CAS PCB. They're identified by a string: "P1R2/P3_LB_MP_2440".
They have a 34pins connector, identified by the string "Ph3_EVT1_FPC_1413".

TouchPad CAS and non-CAS PCBs seems identical. They're identified by a string: "TG2995-C-LB-2410".
They have a 38pins connector, identified by the string "Nspire2.0_FPC_130".


The LCD is controlled by 3 display drivers:
- 1 Novatek NT7702 chip caring of the 240 rows
- 2 unidentified identical chips care of 160 columns each


Now, we have to find out who's guilty.
The screen? One or severall of the display drivers? Both?

If a display driver is guilty, could we find (with Ndless) a way to configure it?

Can the drivers and/or the screen be "easily" replaced? Is the screen just attached to those wire-ribbons, or is there something else?


Any information/idea will be appreciated. Please post your experiences and photos.

205
Other Calculators / T3 teachers stupidity, ignorance & hypocrisy!
« on: October 04, 2010, 12:07:10 pm »
For those understanding french, just look at how T3 teachers can be stupid, when it comes to the Nspire hardware...

The T3 teacher said the OS 2.1 was the best one...
After being shown the different bugs/problems with that OS, he answers saying many stupid things... showing that he doesn't understand anything about the Nspire hardware.

http://www.univers-ti-nspire.fr/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=438
(best posts are on the 2nd page)


You better save the topic... A moderator has been called...

206
News / TI-84+SE discontinued?
« on: September 30, 2010, 09:58:12 am »

Sad news...

TI US/Canada web site hasn't annouced it yet, but according to TI-Germany and TI-Swiss web sites, the TI-84+SE has been discontinued. :'(

The TI-84+SE had 1.5Mb archive memory. The basic TI-84+ only has 480Kb... If this is not enough, the only choice remaining is the TI-Nspire.


Another action from TI in order to force users to the Nspire technology.

Too bad they try to sell more TI-Nspire calculators, not by improving the Nspire OS, but by discontinuing other calculators, so that the Nspire will remain the only choice. >:(


More information in the TI-Bank news:
http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=news&ac=commentaires&id=868

Link to the TI-84 Plus Silver Edition page from Swiss, in French:
http://education.ti.com/educationportal/sites/SUISSE/productDetail/chf_ti84pse.html

UPDATE by DJ Omnimaga (October 4th 2010): It seems all the production stoppages were removed altogether. Was this a mistake? Did someone from the US/Canada division of TI thought it was an error and edited them back even if it is not an error? Or... are Texas Instruments just unable to make up their mind?

207
News / More free space on your Nspire with TNOC
« on: August 10, 2010, 09:41:33 pm »
TNOC is a tool which lets you remove the boot2 and samples from a TNO/TNC file.

So you can:
* prevent your 1.1 boot2 from being updated to 1.4
* update your TI-Nspire faster (the 9Mb 2.1 OS takes so much time...)
* have more free space on your Nspire (3.5Mb with 2.X OSes, 3Mb on 1.7 OSes...)

Screen capture:


How much space can be gained with each OS ?


Before: original 2.1 OS installed just after formatting


After: our special 2.1 OS installed



All informations are available in the TI-Bank news (in french) -> http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=news&ac=commentaires&id=850

We're looking forward to your comments ^^


Edit:
Direct link to TNOC 1.2 -> http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=archives&ac=voir&id=1922

208
News / Nspire 2.1 out, don't install it!
« on: July 14, 2010, 09:26:20 pm »
TI has released OS 2.1 for the TI-Nspire and the TI-Nspire CAS.



The OS has allmost no new feature for the user. And strangely, TI has made great annoucements on their site...
I thought there were something suspectfull...


And unfortunately there is! >:(

Once you have installed OS 2.1 on your TI-Nspire ClickPad or TouchPad, you can't downgrade any more to OS 1.6 or older. So you can't use Ndless any more.

I've made many tests this evening, and I found no way to bypass that protection.


Strangely, the included boot2 is the same (1.4.1571). May be the protection has allready been there for a long time, and has just been activated by OS 2.1. Installing a 1.7/2.0 OS doesn't disable the protection. Even the maintenance menu, with "remove OS" or even "complete reformat" doesn't help.



For more information, just Google-tranlate (french):
* my news on TI-Bank -> http://ti.bank.free.fr/index.php?mod=news&ac=commentaires&id=837
* my tests on the TI-Bank forum -> http://tibank.forumactif.com/actualites-f25/os-21-sorti-t5803.htm

UPDATE by DJ Omnimaga: Moved to News section and submitted to Digg at http://digg.com/software/Texas_Instruments_takes_control_of_their_TI_Nspire_customers (I wonder what is the French equivalent of Digg). Please digg so more people in the world knows about TI actions.

UPDATE by DJ Omnimaga (July 18th 2010): Slashdot article at http://yro.slashdot.org/story/10/07/18/0152245/TI-vs-Calculator-Hobbyists-Again

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