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Sketchpad vs Cabri = RPN vs Algebraic Entry
Posted:
Jun 20, 1995 1:46 PM


To return to an earlier discussion of which comes first, the object or the action: If I'm exploring a geometric situation, I find it more convenient to look at the list of things I might do, decide on one, then select the object. It has always appeared to me that the Sketchpad approach assume that you know in advance exactly what yu want to do. During a demonstration of the HP38 today (we are seriously considering adopting it for our algebra and beginning calulus courses), the HP rep said that one of their first considerations in developing the device was to get rid of Reverse Polish. It occured to me that RP, in which one decides: I have a 6 (enter) I want to take a 5 (enter) then add it (push +) is similar to the approach of the Sketchpad. One "selects" the 5, then "uses" the +. The algebraic entry is to type 6 + 5 (enter) The market has selected algebraic entry as more natural and easier to use. If there is a parallel, then it would appear that Cabri's approach is more userfriendly, if not more natural. imho, that is. MJW
Professor M. J. Winter email: winter@mth.msu.edu Department of Mathematics fax: 517.432.1562 Michigan State University telephone: 517.353.6337 East Lansing, MI 48824 http://math.msu.edu:80/~winter/



