Philadelphia Area HP Handheld Club Meeting

Wednesday, September 21, 1994 - Drexel University

Corvallis is Now the "Mobile Computing Division"

It looks like the rumors about HP Corvallis division being divided up are true: Both calculator and palmtop ( i.e. 200LX, etc.) product research and development will be migrating to Singapore, with the subnotebook (Omnibook) machines remaining in the U.S. (One suspects that the PDA development work will also stay here.) The Corvallis facility is now called the "Mobile Computing Division".

Kittyhawk is Grounded

According to recently published reports, Hewlett-Packard has finally decided to stop development of its "Kittyhawk" 1.3-inch hard disk drive units. After a great deal of fanfare along with the prediction that by 1995 the densites would approach 200 megabytes, it looks like 40 meg is the end of the line. Apparently, they diverted too much of their resources attempting to convert the power circuitry over from 5 to 3.3 volts and not enough to keeping the density up with the 1.8-inch competition. As a result, demand did not ramp up and thus another technologically robust device reaches an untimely end. (Isn't that the name of HP's game?) I guess that means we'll never see that hard-drive-in-the-HP41-cardreader-case.

New Educalc Catalog Goodies

EduCalc's new catalog #65 is on the street. Highlights include the HP200LX and Texas Instruments' new "Calculator Based Laboratory" (CBL) device for the TI-82 and TI-85 units. The CBL will do analog and digital data sampling for calculator based processing with up to 12500 samples per second distributed over its five channels. Several CBL input probes are already available.

Dutch Conference Upcoming

The Dutch HP handheld conference is coming up on October lst and 2nd. Although a lengthy list of well-known invitees was published, I have not seen any such list of registered attendees. Hopefully, the event will be videotaped and I can get a copy over here. (I cannot afford to go to the Netherlands twice in one year, and thus I'll be staying home.)

Minneapolis HP Conference in 1995

Speaking of HP conferences, this handout includes Craig Finseth's initially proposed information on a 1995 HP handheld conference to be held in the Minneapolis, Minnesota area next August 5th and 6th. This conference was first proposed last June at the Summer CES/Chicago HP users' meeting.) The current plan is to hold the conference in meeting-room space at the Mall of America, which is adjacent to the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport. There are both advantages and disadvantages to this location, but owing to the fact that Craig is attempting to undertake this affair basically by himself means that he needs to iron out many details rapidly. He probably will need the full year ahead to work things out, and getting a meeting-space committment early is a definite plus.

Check out the articles in this handout on other technology issues. DEC's latest version of it's Alpha CPU apparently runs at 300 MHz and offers up to 500 MIPS from one 9.1 million-transistor chip. (This is triple the size of the Pentium chip and 1.5 times the predicted size of the as-yet-unannounced Intel P6 Pentium successor.)

Also, it looks like we're on the verge of another standards war over high density CD formats for various computer and music applications. Both Sanyo and Sony/Philips have proposed new standards with densities up to 3.3 gigabytes on a 4.75-inch disk, allowing up to 135 minutes of full-motion video plus audio.

Lastly, Samsung has apparently produced the first prototype of a 256-megabit RAM chip. It seems that computer RAM memory capcities lag behind hard-drive sizes by only a few years and perhaps this time period is being reduced. (When RAM capacity was 1 meg, the going hard-drive size was 40 megabytes. Now it seems that PC RAM is up to 32-64 megabytes with disk drives around 1 gig.)


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