Philadelphia Area HP Handheld Club Meeting

Thursday, April 30th, 1992 - 7 PM - Drexel University

Philly Conference Postscript

Our HP Handheld Conference is a month behind us now. Looking back, it appears that the conference was a success from the standpoints of having interesting speakers as well as fairly good attendance. One hundred sets of conference documentation were initially printed (consisting of the formal conference proceedings as well as the HP48 development tools documentation under separate covers). Besides the 65 registrants, extra sets of the printed materials were sold at the conference and also were advertised on the BBS's as being available by mail. As of last week, all of those 100 sets were sold, with another 20 sets being printed in order to handle additional orders. Due to the success of the HP95LX raffle (which generated $520.00), the conference turned a profit of $187.50. This cash was plowed back into printing the 20 extra sets of proceedings, and will end up back in the club kitty when those sets are sold. A few of those are already spoken for. The entire conference was videotaped, for those who are interested.

A couple of information tidbits which may be worthwhile came out during the conference. The first is that as of April lst, the price of the HP48S was to be reduced (presumably to allow better competition with the upcoming TI85 and Sharp EL-9300 machines). The other one came from Dennis York when he was speaking about production development stages of the HP48 - when asked about the HP48SX possibly being the "end of the product line" he responded that in the next two years there would be a handful of HP48 enhancements coming down the pike. This is good news for those of us who do not view the HP95 as the logical next step to the vertical-format scientific handheld. In the HP95 camp, the press still insists that by early 1993 (barring schedule slippages) we shall see an HP "subnotebook" unit with a 386 running on throwaway-battery power. The rumor grapevine still insists on the existence of projects named "Cougar" (286) and "Lion" (386-based units).

Apple Handheld Soon

Several electronics publications mentioned this week that Apple Computer is supposed to be showing a new handheld pen-based machine at the Summer Consumer Electronics Show at the end of May. Two of these articles appear elsewhere in this handout. If this device shows up at CES, I will attempt to bring back whatever information and photos I can.

An HP48 Library Builder Program

Rick Grevelle in Texas is currently putting the finishing touches on a machine-code HP48 library builder program that he hopes to make available to the public in a ROM card along with other useful utilities (such as a library dissector, library number changer and others). The library builder capabilities are a superset of HP's USRLIB program which runs on a PC and requires a binary upload of a source directory to the PC and then a download of the resultant library from the PC. Rick's program converts a directory to a library directly in the machine itself. The program is amazingly small, occupying only 2 to 3K of space. This would be an ideal companion to Brian Maguire's system RPL development ROM card for creating a product in library format without the need for a computer. (My only concern is that one really requires a PC screen in order to adequately edit HP48 program objects, especially if they are larger than 1K in size.)

A New HP48 Manual

During our conference, Dennis York mentioned that a newly revised version of the HP48 user manual was recently produced. It is one 900-plus-page volume. He collected the names and addresses of those who were interested in obtaining a copy, and this week made good on his promise, as those copies are starting to appear in the mail. Since I forgot to give Dennis my name, I suppose I'll have to purchase the manual like everyone else.

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