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Messages - critor

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31
Casio PRIZM / Re: Open Jazz jackrabbit Casio prizm port
« on: December 18, 2013, 05:15:03 pm »
If I remember well, the 7 mode levels are bonus stages, yes.

32
News / Re: TI-73 overhead overstock at the Stokes Publishing Company
« on: December 17, 2013, 07:25:54 pm »
I am really curious if Chameleon would run on this...

Works perfectly - just invented the "The Educator TI-83 Plus overhead calculator"! :D


Source: http://tiplanet.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=13595

33
News / Re: Hands on with the transparent TI-73 overhead
« on: December 15, 2013, 04:03:15 pm »
There is a backup battery.

I don't see why a reset button is needed, as the TI-z80 Flash key combos still work:
ON+CLEAR to force reset
ON+DEL to force OS installation

34
News / Re: Hands on with the transparent TI-73 overhead
« on: December 15, 2013, 01:44:47 pm »
The keys are a little smaller than on a real TI-z80, but they are quite reactive once you remove the plastic protection: you almost don't need to press them. :)

35
News / Hands on with the transparent TI-73 overhead
« on: December 15, 2013, 09:58:07 am »
Texas Instruments has released many overhead graphing calculators. These models are connectable to an external panel called 'ViewScreen' which just had to be put on a overhead projector.
However, what's wrong with this approach is the need for a special calculator provided with the appropriate ViewScreen connector, and the need for long cables which can cause accidents.


The company "Stokes Publishing Company" has a different approach. In partnership with leading calculator manufacturers (Texas Instruments, Casio and Sharp), it produces under the name "The Educator overhead calculator" a range of transparent basic and scientific calculators, which can therefore directly be put on a projector ! :o

Transparent basic calculators which don't need much power do not even exceed the thickness of a credit card and can be directly powered by the lighting provided by the overhead projector.

Today for you on TI-Planet, after the first talking graphing calculator or the first color graphing calculator, let's have a look at the first transparent graphic calculator ! ;D
Sold as new for around $300, it's much more reasonable than the 600$ priced TI-84 Plus Orion talking graphing calculator.


Indeed, Stokes Publishing Compagny created in partnership with Texas Instruments calculator the first (and only) transparent graphic calculator, based on TI-73 Explorer, an entry-level graphing calculator marketed among others in North America, India , Asia , the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand. The TI-73 Explorer is the first TI non-CAS calculator using the Flash technology, released in 1998, one year before the TI-83 Plus. We will be refering to the latter when it comes to making comparisons.

Opening the box reveals us :
  • a great bicolor case stamped with "Calculator Keeper"
  • the official TI teacher activities book: "TI-73 - A Guide for Teachers ", prepunched
  • a brochure showing the different Stokes Publishing Company products



Let's now open the case. It reveals us :
  • the official handbook of the 'normal' TI-73 Explorer in a dedicated slot secured by two scratch bands
  • specific instructions for battery replacement for the transparent TI-73 Explorer
  • instructions to contact TI for support, although this is not the manufacturer
  • a product registration card
  • the TI-Product 1.1 CD specific to the TI-73 Explorer


This content removed, we can finally see the transparent TI-73 Explorer, surrounded by various accessories :
  • 4 AA (not AAA unlike the 'normal' TI-73 Explorer batteries)
  • a fastening cord
  • the TI-Graph Link USB (aka SilverLink) cable for data transfer with a computer ;D
    (at this price, it's perfectly normal for this cable to be provided - a big problem with the twice more expensive TI-84 Plus Orion)
  • a long 70cm transfer cable to connect to another calculator, doubly secured by two fuses at each end ;D


Finally, we're reaching this great calculator. It takes the form of a double frame hollowing therein two transparent rectangular areas :
  • one for the keyboard
  • one for the screen
So those two areas are what is going to be shown by the projector.


On the back, like the 'normal' TI-73 Explorer we note the presence of a compartment for the backup battery.
However, a mysterious the reset button missing from the original model is surprising us .

On the right we're finding the 2.5mm mini-jack communication port for connection to another calculator or a computer.
There is also a specific adjustment knob which controlling the opacity of the screen base color.


On the top, the cord can be used with some holes in the corners.


Finally let's insert the batteries and let's go! ;D


Let's try to find out if it's using a normal TI-73 Explorer OS, or if it requires a specific OS like the TI-84 Plus Orion talking graphing calculator.
Apparently, calculator is coming with the penultimate official OS, version 1.90.
It has almost 25K of RAM free, suggesting a chip of 32KB, usual on TI-z80 graphing calculators technology.
However, we can be surprised at first by the archive (or storage) memory, where it says 8 free spaces. In fact, it means 8 free memory pages, the memory page beeing 16KB on TI-z80 calculators technology. So this makes us 8x16=128KB , against 160KB for the TI-83 Plus which therefore offers 10 free memory pages for archive.


A priori, the OS is therefore perfectly normal. Let's try to see if we can flash another version of the OS...
Unlike the TI-83 Plus, the link menu is not directly accessible from the keyboard . Indeed it takes the form of a permanent 'fake' unremovable Link application listed in the applications menu, like the Finance application on the TI-83 Plus. However, unlike the TI-83 Plus, it does not offer the ability to transfer an OS between two calculators.
So let's send the latest 1.91 OS from a computer, which works perfectly,  further confirming the identical behavior to a 'normal' TI-73 Explorer ! ;D


Note that the calculator is now offering us 12 free memory pages for archive instead of 8, for a capacity of 12x16=192KB higher than 160KB capacity of the TI-83 Plus ! :o
Indeed, on the TI-73 Explorer, the reserved archive memory space is variable and depends upon the installed OS version :
CalculatorOSArchive memory pagesArchive memory capacityTotal Flash chip capacity
TI-73 Explorer1.3004 - 1.40464 KB512 KB
TI-73 Explorer1.50 - 1.908128 KB512 KB
TI-73 Explorer1.9112192 KB512 KB
TI-83 Plus
TI-83 Plus.fr (blue)
10160 KB512 KB
TI-84 Plus
Pocket.fr TI-84
30480 KB1024 KB
TI-83 Plus.fr USB (black)
TI-83 Plus Silver Edition
TI-84 Plus Silver Edition
TI-84 Plus Pocket SE
961536 KB2048 KB
TI-84 Plus C Silver Edition2243584 KB4096 KB

By accessing the self-test menu as on a 'normal' TI-73 Explorer, we also get the boot code version, 1.3007, the last one, once again perfectly normal.


You can also send older OS like 1.85, but you cannot go below. Indeed, the last 1.3007 Boot Code contains an anti - downgrade which rejects any OS with a lower version number.
(but remember we have the TI-73 Explorer RSA private keys if you absolutely want to have a smaller archive area...)



In the end, an excellent product for the quick and easy overhead of graphing calculators without all the technical disadvantages of a computer projector.
Despite obvious hardware changes, operation, functionality and compatibiliy stayed the same as on the 'normal' TI-73 Explorer, a great performance! ;D


Source : http://tiplanet.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=41&t=13517&lang=en

Link : *overstock* - Get the last TI-73 overhead units in the complete above pack directly from the manufacturer for only 25$

36
News / Re: TI-73 overhead overstock at the Stokes Publishing Company
« on: December 15, 2013, 05:16:59 am »
They do accept credit cards.

37
News / Re: TI-73 overhead overstock at the Stokes Publishing Company
« on: December 14, 2013, 08:13:47 pm »
Chameleon will run on it, as it's the same hardware and software as the TI-73 Explorer.

So yes, you can turn it into the non existent "The Educator TI-83 Plus overhead calculator".


Here's the webform order:
http://www.stokespublishing.com/weborderform.html

If it's not clear for Canada, you can still try to call them:
http://www.stokespublishing.com/orderinfo.html


Of course, it's the price if you buy directly from the manufacturer. Not from your local dealer (there are several ones for Canada).

38
News / TI-73 overhead overstock at the Stokes Publishing Company
« on: December 14, 2013, 08:01:44 pm »
Although still costing around $300 in shops, the Stokes Publishing  Company seems to be on the verge of discontinuing the only transparent graphing calculator in the world, the TI-73 Explorer overhead calculator they developped in partnership with TI.



Manufacturer units are currently being sold at the very low price of $25.

Even if you're not interested in the calculator, it's a real bargain when you know that the pack does include many accessories, among them the TI-Graph Link USB cable which alone costs higher than this !


The calculator can of course be reflashed exactly like a normal TI-73 Explorer calculator and is using the same OS and Boot Code.




Source : http://www.stokespublishing.com/tioc.html#ti73

Links :
Ordering link
The Educator TI-73 overhead calculator photos
The Educator TI-73 overhead calculator test (in french for now)

EDIT: scaled down image a bit for front page

39
News / 1st PDF reader for TI-Nspire CX/CM
« on: December 12, 2013, 11:40:55 am »
Until now, your TI-Nspire could not read documents files other than those created by the TI-Nspire software.
It was not possible to put on your calculator DOC/DOCX (Microsft Word), ODT (OpenOffice Write) or PDF files (Adobe Acrobat).
You couldn't either convert those documents to the TI-Nspire document format as it does manage very limited formatting options.
A solution was the conversion of these documents into BMP, JPEG or PNG images.
Unfortunately, the TI-Nspire system provides a very limited image reader without any zoom or scrolling support, thus limiting the images to a maximum size of 318x212 pixels inadapted to US letter documents. :(

A solution came with the mViewer image reader for owners of TI-Nspire still able to install Ndless.


A drawback of this solution however, was to have a different image for each page, and therefore constantly have to close and reopen images for a document with several pages.

Alas, Texas Instruments decided for back to school 2013 to permanently block any possibility of installing Ndless on new TI-Nspire CX hardware revision 'J', thus creating an unfair inequality among buyers in regards to their future exams where some of them will still be able to build a real world of documents on their TI-Nspire while the others nothing, causing discontent among those last purchasers who can consider having been deceived after being forbidden features granted to their predecessors and which were often one of their purchase criteria. :(



Today, we're not going to reduce this inequality, quite the contrary...  in the next few lines, some of you may explode with joy while the others may be completely disgusted... :(



Because tonight is a great day in the history of the TI- Nspire ... ;)
Legimet was able to port the MuPDF library  and has just released the first third-party document reader for TI-Nspire CX and TI- Nspire CM ! ;D
Named nPDF, it supports PDF, XPS and CBZ documents.

Note that so far it does not work on classic TI-Nspire. But anyway, the program is already 8MB large and wouldn't let you with many space left for those documents on such calculators.

Compered to the previous mViewer solution, advantages of this new player should be:
  • no need to bother looking for a tool to convert your documents to images any more, or even worse to do it manually ;D
  • no need to waste time opening multiple files on the calculator any more before finding the right page of the document ;D
I was initially quite skeptical on the PDF support, as it is not a free format and did undergo many changes in years. However, I've tested several complex documents with many images and tables in addition to the text and have been amazed by an absolutely perfect display ! ;D

For example, here below, reading the 7th of the 125 pages of the Getting started Started with the TI-Nspire ™ CX / TI-Nspire CX CAS Handheld .




Even if the nPDF reader is an extraordinary technical performance, it suffers (at least for now) from many drawbacks and limitations:
  • no possibility to zoom
  • no horizontal scrolling (all the pages are automatically scaled to the width of the screen, 320 pixels)
  • no button to skip to the previous/next page (you've got to scroll to the bottom/top of a page in order to move to the next/previous) :(
  • no continuous scrolling (pressing up/down arrows just produces a simple little up/down scroll, you then have to release the key and repress it, and again and again...) :(
Small things, whose many would be certainly easy and quick to fix with very gew C code lines, it's the matter of a simple weekend, but which for now are going to litterally ruin your user experience, unless you're happy with the video below... :(


Note that nPDF did crash here on the last page change. I think I could spot the problem. We notice indeed that when we're reaching the bottom of a page, the reader can sometimes cross the bottom page which displays some noise lines on the bottom of the screen. This happens with documents whose page height is not a multiple  of the vertical scrolling step. At this point, the reader reads random data outside of the memory allocated for ??the page data, which actually causes such crashes easily.


Briefly, in its current version 0.1, nPDF will be the right thing :
  • to documents with very few pages (because of the crash risk on page changes)
  • to multi-page documents requiring no or very little vertical scrolling (US letter landscape format for example - because of the non-continuous vertical scrolling)
  • to one paged documents for those requiring vertical scrolling (because of the absence of keys to move to the next/previous page)
  • and to documents with text large enough to be readable even once resized to 320 pixels wide (because of the automatic resizing to 320 pixels wide without any zoom possibility)
In my opinion, nPDF is not yet an end-user acceptable alternative to mViewer for reading documents on the TI-Nspire , but it's perfectly able to surpass it and to become the main TI-Nspire document reader before your 2014 exams, unfortunately only for some of you , I know, if the author has time to continue its development for the end-user now! ;D

So do not hesitate to thank the author, support him or encourage him, and even making your own comments or suggestions. ;)



Source and download: http://ourl.ca/20218

Cross-posted from: http://tiplanet.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=13557&p=153843&lang=en

40
General Calculator Help / Re: New CX CAS OS......Worth upgrading?
« on: December 12, 2013, 10:20:57 am »
It looks ok.

41
TI-Nspire / Re: nLaunch: Now for CX!
« on: December 12, 2013, 06:10:52 am »
PP1234F means Nlaunch failed to load the OS.

Reset and see if it happens again.

If yes, then the OS probably got damaged.
This can happen quite easily if you press 'reset' while the TI-Nspire is starting Nlaunch (boot screen with loading bar between 50 and 100%).

You need to reinstall Nlaunch:
- hold Doc+Enter+EE while resetting to get the maintenance menu
- choose "remove OS" (option #2)
- get back your Nlaunch pack and put back the missing files in the 'nlaunch' folder
- resend the nlaunch.tco/tcc installer

42
General Calculator Help / Re: New CX CAS OS......Worth upgrading?
« on: December 12, 2013, 06:06:39 am »
No, Boot2 3.2.4.7 is not ok for this tutorial.
You need Boot2 3.1, and that's why you need to reflash it first using an USB/TTL interface first.

I could see no amazon link embedded in your post.

43
General Calculator Help / Re: New CX CAS OS......Worth upgrading?
« on: December 11, 2013, 08:48:17 pm »
After you've installed Boot2 3.1 and Nlaunch, you can run either OS 3.1 or OS 3.6.

You can even have both OSes together in your TI-Nspire and switch between them when needed.
Check this: http://tiplanet.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=57&t=13213&lang=en

Like I said above, everything is possible ;)

44
No, as FormulaPro is written in the official TI-Nspire language, Lua, and not in C/assembly.



And you don't destroy your calculator by reinstalling OS 3.1/Ndless.
I know how to permanently destroy a TI-Nspire through software beyond repair, and I've never revealed how to publicly.
You really have to want it... You can't destroy it by mistake...


You have the right to stay with OS 3.6, but please avoid contributing to the speading of such rumors.

Thank you. :)

45
General Calculator Help / Re: New CX CAS OS......Worth upgrading?
« on: December 11, 2013, 07:30:48 pm »
It's just about connecting 3 wires - no need to know anything about electronic and I'm not an electronic dude at all either.


Yes, after reflashing Boot2 3.1, installing Nlaunch, launching OS 3.1, and installing Ndless, you'll be able to run C/assembly programs and PDF/image readers.

Boot2 reflashing apart, other steps only use softwares, are easy and pretty well documented online.

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