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Electronic Calculator

  1. Feb 20, 2005 #1
    Which Electronic Calculator is best suitable for me ...studying MS in Mechanical Design Enginnering & working as a Design & Development Engi
    neer in an R & D firm....

    My hot areas of work are Mech
    anical Static & Dynamic Analysis of Strcutures(including Plate Analysis,Harmonic Analysis,Tranisient Analysis,Eigen Values Calculation...etc)
    so please guide me which Electronic Calculator nowadays is most powerful tool for engineers & scientists.....What about Casio,s ClassPad 300???
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 20, 2005 #2

    cronxeh

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    a computer.
     
  4. Feb 21, 2005 #3

    FredGarvin

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    Don't double post.
     
  5. Feb 21, 2005 #4

    Clausius2

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    That's been a point of amazement to me. In my class, I have seen a lot of people with enormous calculators. They multiply matrixes, solve integrals and ODE's, show a graphics display of a function, calculate eigenvalues.....

    During my five years of engineering studies I have used (and I use) a simple Casio fx-992s. It hasn't got anything of what I posted above. It only has 5 memories but it doesn't make any algebra or differential calculations. It is one of the simplest.

    Believe me, you don't need an extraordinary calculator, YOUR BRAIN has to be your calculator. When you are an engineer, you won't have time to go for a calculator. Instead, you will have to play the game in real time, doing calculations in your head and very fast. Harder calculations will be done surely in a computational mode. So that, the sooner you are in your ease without a great calculator, the better.
     
  6. Feb 21, 2005 #5

    FredGarvin

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    Can I get an AMEN for our brother Clausius!

    Well said. The most powerful tool for engineers is the space between their ears. A recently retired engineer that mentored me in vibration analysis used, almost his entire career, a small pocket calculator that you find in your checkbook.

    It's not a status symbol or a sign of how smart you are.
     
  7. Feb 21, 2005 #6

    Clausius2

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    It is worth an Amen too. I have seen that pocket calculators you talked....all my professors have one.

    And before that pocket calculators were invented (let's say the 40's, 50's or 60's), what used our anteccessors?. Answer: a) nothing or b) a calculus manual table. God knows that they were the true brains of the mankind, not like us, who are benefited of small pocket calculators which would be a precious possesion in that age.
     
  8. Feb 21, 2005 #7
    Hello kashoo,

    I wouldn't buy those super-calculators. They are very expensive.
    Rather learn using Matlab or Mathematica. I am sure your university
    will have one of those programs.
     
  9. Feb 21, 2005 #8

    brewnog

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    Big up Clausius for talking sense.

    Sharp EL501 (cost me about £5) is more than adequate, it doest everything which needs to be done on an engineering degree, plus a shedload of functions which you'll never use. I've had mine since I was 14, it's covered in Tipp-Ex and scratches but I wouldn't trade it for one of those fancy colourful whatdyamajigs.
     
  10. Feb 21, 2005 #9

    GENIERE

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    Real engineers use a sliderule and when forced to add, use fingers.
     
  11. Feb 21, 2005 #10

    cronxeh

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    I'm highly against use of 'your head' for calculations. This is one of the causes for major crashes and disasters - when an engineer becomes sloppy. Nobody can do calculations accurately in their heads, and I wont trust even a simple system design or a part to be done without CAD or a Ti-89 for that matter.
     
  12. Feb 22, 2005 #11

    FredGarvin

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    No one advocates doing entire designs using their heads (I don't see anyone being capable of that). The idea is that you should have a good enough feel for the order of magnitudes and rough values that you should end up with that you shouldn't need a portable Cray as a calculator.
     
  13. Feb 22, 2005 #12

    brewnog

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    This is absolute rubbish! A poor engineer thinking that his lack of ability can be compensated for by the use of expensive electronics is far more dangerous than a good engineer with only a cheap pocket calculator. There are many, many things which can be designed to perfection without the use of calculators, let alone CAD software.
     
  14. Feb 22, 2005 #13

    cronxeh

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    Orders of magnitude - yes, sure. Official entry on a paper? No!

    Your entry on a design is your proof in court. If you sit there saying I used my cheap casio and thought of a result in my head, you should be made fully liable.
     
  15. Feb 22, 2005 #14

    FredGarvin

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    Well, now you're completely glancing over some important steps involved in design and verification, i.e. testing and validation.

    There are plenty of items that can and are designed without "black box" intervention. Something that is to be on a released print to a level that would hold someone liable in a court (which most companies would never let happen anyways) should always be verified to the utmost of a company's/individuals abilities and as resources allow. This all has nothing to do with the calculator a person keeps in their pocket.
     
  16. Feb 22, 2005 #15

    brewnog

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    What tosh!

    Using a cheap Casio gives you exactly the same values that a Cray supercomputer would, for most normal calculations an engineer would do. I'm not saying engineers don't use expensive tools, but they're definitely not imperitive to being a good engineer. As for "I thought of a result in my head", well nobody does this. However, a good engineer will always have a feel for the numbers he's dealing with, and when his extremely expensive piece of apparatus gives him a number which surprises him, he'll trust his instincts instead of just accepting it and putting it in his design.

    I didn't think I'd need to say it, but garbage in, garbage out. Most of the professional engineers I've ever worked with still use the calculator they had at school.
     
  17. Feb 25, 2005 #16

    BobG

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    I agree 1...2...4...8...16....32....64....65.... 66....68...72...80....96...97...98....100 %

    oops. You did leave out one thing. They can use their toes, too.

    Actually, when engineers did use slide rules, they had to keep track of the order of magnitude themselves, plus should have a reasonable ballpark estimation of what the final answer should be. On the other hand, they never had chapters in physics, chemistry, math etc telling them how many significant digits they should use. :rofl:
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2005
  18. Feb 26, 2005 #17
    Hello kashoo,

    Your question was which electronic calculator is the best suitable......

    In my profession (civil engineering) I use a TI-84+ graphing calculator.
    This is a cheap and versatile instrument,which, in just two weeks I use it, already proved to be indispensible.

    In your case you also have to calculate eigenvalues,so a TI-89 or a Voyage 200 would come in handy ,I guess.
    See:http://education.ti.com/educationportal/

    Other brands,for instance Casio and HP,also have graphing calculators.

    If the calculations have to be printed,then a computer and a computer-program would be the best solution,albeit the TI Voyage 200 has printing-abilities.
     
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