Spreadsheet App for DM42

Discussion around the Swiss Micros DM42 calculator.
eulerfan
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 10:19 pm

Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by eulerfan » Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:33 pm

eulerfan wrote:
Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:23 pm
Maybe an extension to VARMENU would be good enough, or maybe you need a more general forms facility. I need to think about this.
How about using VARMENU exactly as it is now, but with a way to document the variables offered by VARMENU, and with a way to describe your outputs?

I suggest attaching a different help file (written in HTML, just like the current quick reference) to every program. You could browse the help file to remind yourself what the program does, and what the input variables are. Perhaps the standard HELP key (F1) could be modified to allow you to select the file to browse.

When your piloting program starts, the HELP key would no longer be active, as the function keys would be overridden by VARMENU's variables. You could enter or calculate a value, and then store it into any of these variables by pressing an appropriate function key. Repeat for the other input variables, in any order. I think that's about as easy to use and keystroke-efficient as possible.

When the inputs are done, you press R/S to run the heart of your program.

Your program could then output its results in whatever format you prefer. In narrative form, like:

Heading 53.27 degrees, speed 427.5 knots, for 3.9 hours.

Or in tabular form, like:

Heading 53.27 degrees
Speed 427.5 knots
Time 3.9 hours

Would that be good enough?

******

To allow the above, I propose three changes.

(1) Modify HELP (F1) to put each available file in HELP\ on a function key. We could then browse any file by pressing two keys: F1 to activate HELP, and a second function key to choose which file. Of course, the current quick reference would always be attached to F1, so we could browse it simply by pressing F1 twice.

(2) Add some operations for full-screen text output, emulating an old fashioned text-only terminal. The DM42 could maintain an invisible cursor indicating where the next output would go; the cursor would move after each output operation. We would need operations for moving the cursor, outputting the alpha register at the cursor location, displaying a numeric value, et cetera.

(3) Add some way to pause execution and suppress the stack display (unlike STOP, which shows the stack). During the pause, KEYG and KEYX would be active, so we could attach code to the UP and DOWN keys, allowing multi-page displays. We could press R/S to end the pause.

Would this be good enough? Comments?
Last edited by eulerfan on Sun Apr 07, 2019 11:08 pm, edited 3 times in total.

eulerfan
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 10:19 pm

Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by eulerfan » Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:36 pm

Accidental duplicate, deleted.
Last edited by eulerfan on Sun Apr 07, 2019 10:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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akaTB
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Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by akaTB » Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:35 pm

Auto-quoting 'on'? ;)
Greetings,
    Massimo

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rprosperi
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Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by rprosperi » Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:45 pm

akaTB wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:35 pm
Auto-quoting 'on'? ;)
You kill me :D :D
--bob p

DM42: β00071 & 00282

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Walter
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Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by Walter » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:00 pm

rprosperi wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:45 pm
akaTB wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:35 pm
Auto-quoting 'on'? ;)
You kill me :D :D
:lol: Some people tend to post about complicated projects trying to tell us it's all easy but prove challenged by simple editing already. :roll:
DM42 SN: 00041 --- Follower of Platon.

HP-35, HP-45, ..., HP-50, WP 34S, WP 31S, DM16L

eulerfan
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 10:19 pm

Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by eulerfan » Sun Apr 07, 2019 11:01 pm

I don't know how my comment got duplicated. I've deleted the second copy.

Jim_W
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Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:36 am

Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by Jim_W » Mon Apr 08, 2019 1:07 am

Hi Eulerfan - Thank you for all of your work on this proposal. I am beginning to see and understand the complexity involved in this request. I will try to answer your questions and explain better my needs.

1) Pilots work with check lists. The output should be in tabular form.
2) The only reason I request the input data list is so I can check it to see if I entered the right data. It would also be nice if I could correct an incorrect value right there on the list and then run the program again. For example, if I need to divert a flight to an alternate airport while in flight for what ever reason, I need the new navigation numbers as soon as possible. For this reason, I do not think your first proposal would help me very much at all. i.e. - If I have an engine out situation, the last thing I want to do is to push buttons for a HELP menu.
3) I like both proposals 2 and 3. Full-screen text output, I believe, would be most beneficial. And allowing multi-page displayed (controlled by the UP and DOWN keys) would get the job done. In fact, couldn't we also display the input data first on the output screen and just scroll down to view the output data?

In fact - Since the DM43 works with stacks, could this whole request be fulfilled by having a large number (say 24) of rows in our stack? If each row could hold a variable name and its value, we could just scroll up and down the stack, changing the input variables values as needed, and then press R/S when ready.

Please don't laugh. I know nothing about programming a calculator's OS. I'm just saying that we could forget about the four column display that I first talked about. The job could be done with only two columns if we could only scroll the rows. We could list the input data in the first few rows and then list the output data in the following rows. Row #1 could say "INPUT DATA:" and Row#x could say "OUTPUT DATA:".

I hope this will help you see what I have in mind. Please ask more questions if you need to. - Jim

Jim_W
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Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by Jim_W » Mon Apr 08, 2019 3:14 pm

Morning, Eulerfan - I had another thought on this last night. Here is a "screen shot" of my idea:

Magnetic Variation (deg).....-13
Wind Direction (deg).........180
Wind Velocity (kts).............20
True Air Speed (kts)..........110
Fuel Burn Rate (gal/hr).......9.5
...............................................9.5

This is in the input section. The first 4 lines are displayed using your idea of scrollible output text lines. The 5th line is the y register and the 6th line is the x register showing the value in the y register. The value in the 5th line can be changed by just typing in a new number and hitting ENTER. The last two lines change as you scroll through the input list. This way you can change the value of any input variable by just placing it on the 5th line. When all of the input variables are the way you want them, press R/S to recalculate the output data.

What do you think?

Jim

eulerfan
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Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by eulerfan » Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:14 am

Jim_W wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 1:07 am
Hi Eulerfan - Thank you for all of your work on this proposal.
Your're welcome.
I am beginning to see and understand the complexity involved in this request.
My proposal and the work that will be needed to implement it is nothing compared to the sweat that went into the calculator itself (DMCP and Free42). Only a spreadsheet would compare in complexity; it would be hundreds of times, maybe thousands of times, more difficult to implement than the few little additions I suggested.
1) Pilots work with check lists. The output should be in tabular form.
That's fine. The screen would show whatever your program chooses to output.
2) The only reason I request the input data list is so I can check it to see if I entered the right data. It would also be nice if I could correct an incorrect value right there on the list and then run the program again.
I suggested using VARMENU as that is relatively easy to set up and reasonably convenient to operate. Other solutions will need more work on your part.

For instance, your pilot program could use the new, proposed terminal output features to display a table of the current values of all the input variables. You could enter or calculate a new value, then press a function key to store the value into a variable and update the screen. Repeat for each variable. This way, you could see all the input values at all times. You could press R/S to proceed with your program's number crunching.

Your program would look something like this:

(Step A) Initialize all variables.

(Step B) Show the table of input variables.

(Step C) Using KEYG/KEYX and MENU, associate a bit of code (Step I) with each function key, one per input variable. If you have more than six inputs, you might have to arrange UP and DOWN to scroll between variable rows; this is a bit of a pain, which is why VARMENU would be more convenient.

(Step D) Do a STOPO (a new feature) to stop your program temporarily, avoid splashing the stack onto your nice, tidy table, and enable a one-line calculator showing only stack X. Once the STOPO executes, you would be free to use the calculator as normal, except that you could press function keys to store input values, or press R/S to proceed with the heart of your program.

(Step F) The number-crunching heart of your program.

(Step G) Display your results. You may again need to activate UP and DOWN, this time to scroll between output pages.

(Step H) RTN to end the execution of your program.

(Step I) A bit of code for each function key. Each little section would store X into a specific variable, update the screen, and RTN (for KEYX) or GTO back to your STOPO instruction (for KEYG).

Once all this is running, you would see the current value of all your inputs at all times. You could enter or calculate an input value and press a function key for the variable you want to modify. For example, if you want to set variable VVV to 27*4, you would press "2 7 ENTER 4 * F3", assuming F3 is set up for VVV. Repeat for the other input variables. Pressing R/S would continue execution of your program after the STOPO.
In fact - Since the DM43 works with stacks, could this whole request be fulfilled by having a large number (say 24) of rows in our stack? If each row could hold a variable name and its value, we could just scroll up and down the stack, changing the input variables values as needed, and then press R/S when ready.p\
Is the DM43 in the production pipeline still?

EDIT: fixed steps G, H, I.

eulerfan
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 10:19 pm

Re: Spreadsheet App for DM42

Post by eulerfan » Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:23 pm

I fixed steps G, H, I in the above. If you were confused, please read again. Sorry.

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