HP Handheld SIG News - March 19, 1994

Programming Class: Next Stop - HP48 Input/Output

Our last HP48 programming class covered test and looping structures, and the turnout was surprisingly good. Our next session (at 11AM in Matheson 306 on 4/16) will cover input and output techniques. With the many functions such as PROMPT, INPUT, WAIT, TEXT, DISP, FREEZE, etc., there will be lots to discuss.

A Philadelphia Consumer Electronics Show Soon?

A recent issue of This Week In Consumer Electronics ("TWICE") had a surprise for CES devotees. It mentioned that the Electronics Industry Association had plans for migrating the Summer CES from its annual Chicago locale following the 1995 show. According to the EIA, the 1996 show is scheduled to be held in Philly at the new Pennsylvania Convention Center.

Just a few weeks ago, a radio news report (covering the opening of the Reading train-shed addition to the convention center) said that due to a switch in schedules, the Summer CES would be coming to Philly as early as next year. We'll be watching the trade publications for the final details as they emerge.

New EduCalc Catalog Mailed

The latest EduCalc catalog (#63) shows the ever-expanding sections for HP48 and HP95/100LX products. Due to the recent 2-meg 100LX introduction along with the price reduction of the 1-meg unit, the HP95LX appears to be phasing out. As a result, only used 95's are featured in this catalog. The cache of older HP calculators that were mentioned in last month's article is steadily dwindling. Although this catalog mentions stocks of HP11C, HP16C and HP27S machines, as of this writing in late March, the 11C's were just about gone and the others were down to around a hundred of each. Be sure to get 'em while they're still available.

An HP PDA In Our Future

It looks like Hewlett-Packard is tipping its hand a bit in the electronics trade publications when it comes to disclosing their intentions to enter the personal digital assistant market. As far back as late 1991, there were rumors that the Corvallis division was embarking on a study to develop a new line of handheld electronic devices. Now, with their apparent interest in software such as Geoworks' operating system, more details are surfacing. In a recent issue of Electronic Engineering Times, a report on HP's becoming a financial investment partner in Geoworks Corporation revealed some interesting tidbits. It seems that HP's goal is to develop a product that will sell for no more than $300. and that they've been researching for at least three years. Various configurations had been proposed recently inside HP, including some utilizing Microsoft's new WinPad software, but all previous designs had been killed before reaching final production. Apparently, at least one pen-based HP100LX-type of machine to be announced within a year may be one result of this activity. A PC Week article mentioned that a partnership between HP, Geoworks and possibly Novell may result in this new line of PDAs.

One Solution to the PCMCIA Card Port Shortage

Recently, a company called Computerized Data Systems for Manufacturing (CDSM) proposed a novel solution to the PCMCIA port shortage for small computing devices. A plug-in card which opens to reveal sockets which accept up to twelve small ROM/RAM chips in nickel-sized packages has been shown. This could solve many problems for machines (such as HP's palmtops) which contain only one card port. With a need for communications software, electronic disk memory, system RAM and other applications all present at the same time, a multi-chip interchangeable card could become pretty popular.

Visit Us on PACS Saturday, Go to TCF on Sunday

We'll be holding our regular meeting at 1 PM following the HP48 programming class, so come visit us at Drexel on Saturday, and save Sunday for the Trenton Computer Festival. New folks are always welcomed.

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