Monday, April 19, 2004

I've found religion

Over my years in math, science, & engineering, I've found two basic groups of people: the TI camp, and the HP camp. Yup, who we are as people and professionals really just comes down the calculator we use. Okay, that's not true. I, personally, am much, much less than the calculator I use. But that's just me. I'm a TI guy, mainly since they hooked me on TIs back during my freshman year of high school when they suggested we purchase a TI-82. I remember my mother not being too thrilled at the suggestion that I needed an $80 calculator, but I ended up getting it. And so it began.

I never was a huge guru in programming that bad boy, but I put in some hours. I seem to remember wasting inordinate amounts of time in the library trying to perfect my Star Trek interface and set of sub-programs as well as attempting to find a formula for the warp power curve. Man, I'd say that I've come a long way since then, but at least I was hanging out with friends in the library. This was the days before driving, mind you, so places like the library and the Social Studies Resource Center were where it was at. You know, for the losers.

Jesus Christ my life sucks. Anyway...

Senior year they came out with the TI-92. Full QWERTY keyboard. Advanced mathematics capabilities, symbolic manipulation, big screen, "pretty print," etc. I certainly didn't need one of these monstrosities, so I got one. There's no fucking way I could be rolling around with my 82 when there was this monument to excess available at stores. This thing was so fucking cool that I had no choice but to refer to it as God. I had given up on the whole religion thing by then, but if there was anything in life worth worshipping it was that goddamn calculator. A friend of mine was, well, let's call him a Christian Conservative. Believe it or not, we got along quite well, despite the fact that we disagreed on everything except for the facts that Jenny McCarthy was hot (back when she was hot and not talking much) and Command & Conquer is fun. Anyway, he took exception to us referring to the 92 as "God," but he also could not deny the power that the calculator possessed. As such, he nicknamed it the TI-G.O.D. (gee-oh-dee), and the name stuck.

Owning this calculator is fun. I just love leaving it on my desk at work or somewhere and watching the inevitable parade of people asking "What the fuck is that thing?" Or some variant thereof. Again, people may not believe in deifying the TI-G.O.D., but they too cannot ignore that, technically, it's as hard as steel.

Of course, the trusty ol' 82 was not just tossed aside when I got the 92... Since teachers wouldn't let me use the 92 when we were taking tests. The 82 also came in handy as a pawn during college when (I think) ETP somehow ended up owing someone an 82 so I just offered mine up.

The 92 has been my trusty sidekick for like six or seven years now. Sophomore year of college it got an upgrade when they came out with the "Plus Module," which ETP and I simply refer to as the Dork Module. It added differential equation capabilities, units, and all sorts of unnecessary shit. But, just like with the original 92 acquisition, I could not be satisfied with not having the top-of-the-line. Also purchased was the TI Graph-Link cable, giving me the capability to download shit online and transfer it to the Machine. Hell yeah, bitch.

The 92+ (as 92s with the Dork Module are known) is no longer the top of the line, as TI has since come out with the Voyage 200, the 92's successor. I've managed to cast aside the need for the top-of-the-line (read: most expensive) and just stick with the 92 plus Dork Module. Part of the reason is because "Voyage 200" is a weak-ass name for such a monument to awesomeness. Why not just stick with the running theme and call it the TI-95 or something? Okay, okay, I can at least admit that I've thought about buying it, but I don't think I'm gonna. Actually, I've been thinking of getting the "Titanium" version of the TI-89 when it comes out, so that I have something with 92 capabilities in the old-school 82 form-factor for increased portability. I think that if I do, it will have to be called the TI-Jesus (pronounced Hay-seuss).

So anyway, why the fuck am I telling you this long, boring story about my history of calculator purchases, other than to point out what a fucking loser I am and to add another reason to the "Why I'm never going to have a girlfriend" list? Oh yeah, to post a link to If you've got a programmable TI calculator, chances are you're aware of this site already, and this was just another unnecessary exploration into my pitiful life. One thing that may be of particular note is the section on overclocking for those (like me) who are never satisfied with anything.

Wow, I just wasted about a half an hour talking about my calculator. Did I mention that my life sucks?

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