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HP -42S Manual

An alternative: hp-42s calculator and free42 simulator for palmos.
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An Alternative HP-42S/Free42 Manual
With contributions by Russ Jones, Manhattan Beach, California
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU
Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software
Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of
the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".
For more information visit the Free Software Foundation at
Version 0.7 ─ January 2010
Author: José Lauro Strapasson, Brazil
Copyright (C) 2010 José Lauro Strapasson.


Table of Contents

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   Summary of Contents for HP HP-42S

  • Page 1 An Alternative HP-42S/Free42 Manual Version 0.7 ─ January 2010 Author: José Lauro Strapasson, Brazil With contributions by Russ Jones, Manhattan Beach, California Copyright (C) 2010 José Lauro Strapasson. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software...
  • Page 2: Table Of Contents

    1 Introduction............................3 2 Basic Operations ..........................4 2.1 RPN...............................4 2.2 Turn ON/OFF..........................5 2.3 Setting the display contrast ......................5 2.4 Training RPN using HP-42S......................5 2.5 Menus............................5 2.6 DISP Menu............................6 2.6.1 The FIX function........................6 2.6.2 The ALL function ........................6 2.6.3 The SCI function........................6 2.6.4 The ENG function........................6...
  • Page 3: Introduction

    (very nice) I would like to finish this introduction saying that it would be nice to have the HP-42S back to life again and even better to have a model (both real and in simulator/emulator form) based on HP-42S but with some of the 33S features like more memory, an equation editor, fractions, program lines starting with letters, physical constants, units conversion, less useless functions, etc.
  • Page 4: Basic Operations

    2 Basic Operations 2.1 RPN The HP-42S, like most old HP calculators, is a RPN calculator. RPN comes from “Reverse Polish Notation”. In RPN we first enter data and then we enter the mathematical operations. Example: To make a simple operation like 2+2 in a normal algebraic calculator we do “2 + 2 =”...
  • Page 5: Turn On/off

    2.2 Turn ON/OFF To turn your HP-42 on press ON. The ON key is the same EXIT key. To turn your HP-42S off press OFF. OFF is in the same key as EXIT and ON, and by we mean you have to press the orange key before pressing the EXIT key (which has “OFF”...
  • Page 6: Disp Menu

    2.6 DISP Menu The DISP menu is the first menu we have to see. It is above E key. So start by pressing DISP. When you do this the DISP menu appears in the first line with the following functions. RDX.
  • Page 7: Rdx. And Rdx, Functions

    mode while 1000 will be 1.00E3 in the same mode. Why do we get 100.E0 for 100 instead of 100.00E2 in ENG 2 mode? Because the calculator shows in engineering mode the same number of digits it shows in scientific mode. 2.6.5 RDX.
  • Page 8: Getting Used To Some Keys Of The Keyboard

    √x and : These functions just calculate the square root and the square of a number in x. When studying complex numbers we will see that unlike the HP-33S, in HP-42S the number in square root can be negative. LOG and : These functions calculate the base 10 logarithm and its inverse.
  • Page 9 ACOS: These are the cosine trigonometric function and inverse. TAN and ATAN: These are the tangent trigonometric function and inverse. Not all numbers can have a result for tangent. For example tan(90°) goes to infinity. The HP-42S gives a big number instead. ENTER and ALPHA: The ENTER key does not need any comment.
  • Page 10: Memory

    This available memory is shared with everything including programs, variables, etc. Let's start from the basic. To store a number which is in register x of the stack we use the STO function. The HP-42S has by default 25 positions in the memory from R to R .
  • Page 11: The Catalog Menu

    FCN PGM REAL CPX MAT MEM FCN: It shows all the functions available in HP-42S calculator. It has many lines and one must use the ▼ and ▲ to navigate through the lines. Here you are going to find important functions we...
  • Page 12: The Custom Menu

    CATALOG menu, now is a convenient place to talk about it. The HP-42S calculator has a lot of functions. So many, in fact, that it is inconvenient to find the function you want every time in the FCN menu or to use XEQ “function name” every time. To solve this problem HP-42S has the CUSTOM menu which can contain functions or user-written programs you personally select.
  • Page 13: Complex Numbers

    Unlike the HP-33S (and its ancestor HP-32SII) complex numbers are straightforwardly supported and used in the HP-42S. There is almost nothing special to say. Just enter –1 and press √x, what are you going to have is x: 0.0000 i1.0000 which means i. (Just for comparison, to do the same in HP-33S we have to do 0 ENTER 1 +/–...
  • Page 14: Complex Numbers In Polar Coordinates

    6 Programming Programming the HP-42S is very simple and very versatile. It does not use the RPL style of the HP- 48 or HP-49. You program in the same way you use the calculator and unlike some non-HP cheaper calculators, all the steps are shown in the display and in numbered lines.
  • Page 15 +/– RCL 03 √x – RCL 00 × ÷ And the second root is given by RCL 01 +/– RCL 03 √x RCL 00 × ÷ So what about if you have to solve hundreds of this kind of equation? Only changing the a, b and c values? It would be better to save all the steps in the calculator's memory and let it do the calculations for you.
  • Page 16: More Than One Program In The Memory

    00►{ 31-Byte PRGM }. Almost 1 byte per line of program. As we said the HP-42S has about 7200 bytes of memory. Not bad! Just for comparison, the HP-32S had 390 bytes and spent about 1.5 bytes per line. The HP-20S had only 99 lines/steps and the HP-9G had 400 steps while HP-33S has 31KB (but hardly can take advantage of this due to a limit of 26 memories/labels, which is the same of 32S, and it spends about 3 bytes per line).
  • Page 17: The X?0 And X?y Sub-menus

    Up to now we saw nothing about how we could do a IF instruction, like what we have in computer programming languages like BASIC, Pascal or C. In fact there is no IF, THEN, ELSE, ELSEIF, etc in the HP-42S programming language but there are 12 test functions which are: X=0? X≠0? X<0? X>0? X≤0? X≥0? X=Y? X≠Y? X<Y? X>Y? X≤Y? X≥Y?
  • Page 18: Real Program Examples

    Example: A kind of “timer” 01 LBL A 02 1 03 – 04 X=0? 05 STOP (Enter R/S) 06 GTO A 07 RTN In this program you first enter a big integer number and then press XEQ “A”. The program will subtract 1 from this number until it gets to zero.
  • Page 19: Using The Solver

    7 Using the Solver Unfortunately the HP-42S does not have an equation editor like that of the 33S. To use the solver and numeric integration we must enter the equation in a program which must have a global name. Let's suppose we want to solve the equation x –...
  • Page 20: Numeric Integration

    When we leave the program mode and go to the Solver menu again we select FX program and what we are going to see is Now just enter the values of A, B, C and a start value for X and we are done. Some interesting things to say are: 1.
  • Page 21: Statistics

    ∫ Example: Calculate First we enter the function as a program 01 LBL “FX” 02 MVAR “X” (also available in ∫f(x) menu) 03 RCL X 04 X↑2 05 RTN 06 END Then we go to the ∫f (x) menu and what we see is “Select ∫f(x) Program”. In our case we select FX then what appears is “Set Vars;...
  • Page 22: The Sub-menu Cfit

    1, which does not mean the estimation will be good! 9.2 The second line: ALLΣ, LINΣ, ΣREG and ΣRG? Functions Unlike HP-33S which has special variables for statistic, the HP-42S uses the normal memories from to R in the following way.
  • Page 23: Matrices

    ΣRG? Function. Conclusion: Four useless functions! 10 Matrices Despite of its small display one of the nice features of HP-42S is the ability to work with matrices. This is done using the MATRIX menu. This multi-line menu has the following items:...
  • Page 24 The EDIT function is not only useful to enter a matrix but also to see all the elements of a matrix resulting from a calculation. Talking about matrix calculation, the HP-42S does +, –, × and ÷ of matrices in normal way. Of course, as you know, the operations are not always possible. For example: To sum or subtract matrices they must have the same size, etc.
  • Page 25 They are: DOT and CROSS. As you know vectors can be represented by a single row or a single column matrix. In the HP-42S, vectors will be represented only by single row matrices.
  • Page 26: Other Bases

    12 Flags The HP-42S has 100 flags from 00 to 99. A flag is a “binary memory” which works as an indicator of calculator's status. A flag can be “set” (true) or “clear” (false). Just for comparison the 33S has only 12 flags.
  • Page 27: Free42-specific Features

    24: If this flag is set the calculator will ignore error messages. “Out of Range” will appear as 9.99999999999E499 in the HP-42S and as 1.7977E308 in Free42. This is important if you want to prevent an unwanted stop during a program.
  • Page 28: Program Import And Export

    On mobile devices, the print output is stored in the print.txt file accessible from the browser interface. 14. Comprehensive Command List The following table lists every function or command supported by the HP-42S in alphabetical order, along with a synopsis of its purpose and behavior.
  • Page 29 Name Description variable. (indirect allowed) AROT Alpha rotate. Rotate the Alpha register by the number of characters specified in the x- register. ASHF Alpha shift. Shifts the six left-most characters out of the Alpha register. –1 ASlN Arc sine. Returns sin –1 ASlNH Arc hyperbolic sine.
  • Page 30 Name Description CPX? If the x-register contains a complex number, execute the next program line; if the x- register does not contain a complex number, skip the next program line. CROSS Returns the cross product of two vectors (matrices or complex numbers). DECM Selects Decimal mode (base 10).
  • Page 31 Name Description the index pointers are at the last (lower-right) element in the matrix. Go to label. From the keyboard, move the program pointer to the specified label. In a running program, cause the program to branch to the specified label. Parameter: local or global label (indirect allowed) HEXM Select Hexadecimal mode (base 16).
  • Page 32 Name Description Logical NOT. Returns NOT(x). OCTM Select Octal mode Turn the calculator off (programmable). (Pressing ■OFF does not execute the programmable OFF function.) Recall the current element from the indexed matrix. (Equivalent to RCLEL.) Continuous on. Prevent the calculator from automatically turning off after ten minutes of inactivity.
  • Page 33 Name Description Round the number in the x-register using the current display format. RNRM Return the row norm of the matrix in the x-register. ROTXY Rotate the 36-bit number in the y-register by x bits. RSUM Return the row sum of each row of the matrix in the x-register and returns the sums in a column matrix.
  • Page 34 Name Description WMEAN Weighted mean. Return the mean of x-values weighted by the y-values Σxy / Σ y WRAP Select Wrap mode, which prevents the indexed matrix from growing. X< > Swaps the contents of the x-register with another register or variable. Parameter: register or variable (indirect allowed) X<>Y Swaps the contents of the x- and y-registers.
  • Page 35: Gnu Free Documentation License

    Name Description seconds format. →HR To hours. Converts x from a minutes-seconds format to a decimal fraction. →0CT To octal. Converts a decimal number to the octal representation. Note: This function is included to provide program compatibility with the HP-41 (which uses the function name OCT).
  • Page 36 world-wide, royalty-free license, unlimited in duration, to use that work under the conditions stated herein. The "Document", below, refers to any such manual or work. Any member of the public is a licensee, and is addressed as "you". You accept the license if you copy, modify or distribute the work in a way requiring permission under copyright law.
  • Page 37 "Dedications", "Endorsements", or "History".) To "Preserve the Title" of such a section when you modify the Document means that it remains a section "Entitled XYZ" according to this definition. The Document may include Warranty Disclaimers next to the notice which states that this License applies to the Document.
  • Page 38 Modified Version to whoever possesses a copy of it. In addition, you must do these things in the Modified Version: A. Use in the Title Page (and on the covers, if any) a title distinct from that of the Document, and from those of previous versions (which should, if there were any, be listed in the History section of the Document).
  • Page 39 add another; but you may replace the old one, on explicit permission from the previous publisher that added the old one. The author(s) and publisher(s) of the Document do not by this License give permission to use their names for publicity for or to assert or imply endorsement of any Modified Version. 5.
  • Page 40 8. TRANSLATION Translation is considered a kind of modification, so you may distribute translations of the Document under the terms of section 4. Replacing Invariant Sections with translations requires special permission from their copyright holders, but you may include translations of some or all Invariant Sections in addition to the original versions of these Invariant Sections.
  • Page 41 11. RELICENSING "Massive Multiauthor Collaboration Site" (or "MMC Site") means any World Wide Web server that publishes copyrightable works and also provides prominent facilities for anybody to edit those works. A public wiki that anybody can edit is an example of such a server. A "Massive Multiauthor Collaboration"...

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