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TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Posted by Kirk on 7 August 1999, 01:06 GMT

Texas Instruments has just recently acquired Soft Warehouse, Inc. The company's primary product is Derive, a CAS (Computer Algebra System) upon which the TI-89, TI-92, and TI-92 Plus are based. This acquisition will enable TI to release more products that utilize a CAS. Also, it may lead to new and improved calculators in the TI line.

Source: Texas Instruments


The comments below are written by ticalc.org visitors. Their views are not necessarily those of ticalc.org, and ticalc.org takes no responsibility for their content.

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

As far as leading to improved calcs, I think the 89 is a great calc. Cant seem to get better than this. But I wish to see TI make a calc that will be great for math, but kickass for playing games in. I know most of you out there wish you had more RAM sometimes, and a better display, and maybe some other kind of linking other than the linkport. We each have our own idea of what a 'gaming calc' should be like. As far as adding more math to it, chances are that is not part of the idea........

     7 August 1999, 08:03 GMT

Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Dr. Sbaitso

Well, I dunno...if TI put out a "gaming calc", then they'd have to compete with the likes of Nintendo, whose Gameboy Color does quite a nice job in the gaming department :) Besides, I think part of the real appeal of games on the calc is realizing that that's not quite what the calc was designed for, but we can do it anyway...kind of a "pushing the limit of something that wasn't designed to do what we're making it do" deal. And a final note: I don't think TI's in the gaming business, so it wouldn't make any sense market-wise for them to bust out into the gaming industry and drawing away from their primary focus. Just a few thoughts..

     7 August 1999, 08:50 GMT

Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
(Web Page)

No, he saud make a calculator that also was good for games. Could you do a 3D graph on a gameboy color? Or how about Symbolic manipulation? The TI89/92+ could be better, like with a color display, but the calculator part is what allows it to be used in school. If your math teacher saw you with a game boy, what would happen?

     7 August 1999, 17:04 GMT

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
James Rubingh

Yes, you could do a 3D graph on a Gameboy Color.

     7 August 1999, 18:45 GMT

Re: Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

One Feature that would be on this calc is link feature which would allow for programming games and programs and loading into the available RAM. I am pretty sure that the GameBoy Does not have the feature to program games and be able to execute them with either a cartridge or RAM.

     7 August 1999, 19:19 GMT

Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
adam b
(Web Page)

I don't think TI's in the gaming business either. TI is a huge company that deals with a lot more than just calcs... for them to make a calculator that was meant partially as a substitute for a gameboy would mean that they would have to start competing with companies such as gameboy, and I don't think they want to do that - at all.

     10 August 1999, 16:44 GMT

Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Kirk Meyer
(Web Page)

I very strangely doubt that acquiring Soft Warehouse would help TI to make their calculators more utilized to games... Unless you think symbolic manipulation is fun...

     7 August 1999, 17:25 GMT

Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

I do. When I got my TI-89, I spent about two hours just playing around with it. Although I found a minor bug. When in exact mode, if you enter a factorial that is too big to handle (i.e. 300!), it will simply return what you entered. However, if you enter an equation involving factorials, it may return the wrong answer (i.e. 300! * 301 = 301!). I'm not sure that that's strictly symbolic manipulation, but it seems related.

     8 August 1999, 15:43 GMT


I meant to put, for the example, "300! * 301 = 301!" will return "false" if entered into the TI-89

     8 August 1999, 15:49 GMT

Re: Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

That bug seems to have been fixed in romv.1.05.

     9 August 1999, 05:36 GMT

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
James Rubingh
(Web Page)

I don't know about more RAM... but i would love to have features on the calc like the LCD interrupt, and VBLank interrupts. that would make game graphics really trippy on the calcs...

but if you want that, then you can just code the GameBoy, part of the coolness of the calc, is that you're not supposed to be making games for it, your supposed to make "applications" heh

     7 August 1999, 18:43 GMT

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

i meant LCD and VBlank interrupts like the ones on the GameBoy and GBC.

     7 August 1999, 18:48 GMT

Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

Here's another thing:

If it had an 80286 processor, 640k RAM, integrated floppy disk drive, and 16 color display, you'd get a crappy computer.

     7 August 1999, 19:52 GMT

Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

true but it would be an awesome calc and in handheld what more could you ask for

     7 August 1999, 20:03 GMT

Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Kirk Meyer
(Web Page)

Hm. There are actually quite a few things that I think could be done to make it a better calculator for math. Consider Mathematica(TM)... the TI-89 cannot do everything that Mathematica can. I'm not saying that it should, I'm just saying that there is obviously room for imporvement...

     7 August 1999, 23:44 GMT

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Noah Medling

I think this is good news, at least for me and my fellow programmers. This means that TI can release more info about the 68k calcs (89, 92(+)). That means I can make better games for all those people who really don't give a ****.

     8 August 1999, 02:07 GMT

frustrated with games on TI 89

I had an 86, but when the 89 came out, I had to get it. I got it for the math functions, not the games, though. However, I loved the games on my 86. I had Ashell and a whole bunch of games and everything was cool. But with the 89, it's a real hassale. You have to install a shell, and then mess around with libraries. Plus the games are huge in size (sometimes requiring 3 or 4 files for one game). And then the calc crashes like all the time. And you gotta do that whole process over again. It sucks.

I expected the games, etc. to be sweet on my 89, but it turns out it's just a big hassale.

I don't mean to be disrepectful to any programer who has spent time making these fine games. It's just that it was a lot simpler, nicer, and easier to get and play games on my 86.

It almost makes me want to get my 86 back for the games.

     8 August 1999, 05:45 GMT

Re: frustrated with games on TI 89

First, the word is "hassle." Second, there _are_ some good games on the 86, but you can't tell me that games like SMQ, Street Fighter, and Phoenix are not worth installing a few files to play. And third, unless a game is just in its beta, they are excellently programmed and very rarely crash. If they do, DoorsOS usually will catch the error and recover.

     8 August 1999, 06:08 GMT

Simple Solution...
Jean Vásquez
(Web Page)

To eliminate the 'hassle' of sending shells and libs to the calc, just do this:
1)Pick your favorite shell
2)Create a folder on your PC with the shell and ALL the libs that are out there
3)Create a .89g file with all the files in the dir you just made
4)Send it to your calc every time it crashes.

This will eliminate having to find all those files and sending them. As for your calc crashing, if the game was written well, it should not crash. My favorite games (Phoenix, SMQ, Zelda, Street Fighter, Rusty's Ultimate Solitare) very rarely crash. And if you've never played Fernando 3C, you wont see why your 89 can be so much better than the 86 (yes, I've owned an 86). And if you ever feel like trying a new kickass shell, load Prosit to your calc for something totally new. Hope this helps.

     8 August 1999, 19:05 GMT

Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

When TI eventually releases the 89 sdk, does this mean that they will include info on the advanced math software as well as the rom calls, etc?

     8 August 1999, 17:15 GMT

Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.
Mark Leverentz

I doubt it. Yes, we'll get access to all of the functions, but I sort of doubt that they'll actually explain the algorithms to use them. If you look at the names of the ROM calls we've been given, there is a lot of very low level math control (push_*(), and pop_*() ), and some very high level control (Parse2DExpr(), Print2DExpr() ), but they don't give away a lot of the internal algorithms. I dunno.

     10 August 1999, 02:05 GMT

Re: Re: Re: TI Acquires Soft Warehouse, Inc.

It would be great if they did though. Think about it... you could use any TI-Basic command, plus any assembly specific efficiency...

I am not an experienced Assembly programmer so if i am wrong about this please feel free to let me know.

     10 August 1999, 07:40 GMT

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