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Author Topic: Free uCalc calculator just for trying the new animated tutorial  (Read 4451 times)
Daniel Corbier
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« on: September 09, 2008, 10:38:59 PM »

I am working on the next major version of the uCalc Graphing Calculator (which is now also a very programmable calculator).  I am currently giving away a free license for the current version, which will also entitle you to a free upgrade for the next version when it comes out.  All you have to do is download the new beta (go to http://www.ucalc.com/download.html ), and run through the animated tutorial, and e-mail me your feedback on the tutorial and/or the calculator itself.  The animated tutorial is designed to be as entertaining as it is instructive.

The uCalc Graphing Calculator is an end-user application.  However, if you are a programmer, you will notice many programmable features in this new version.  The animated tutorial itself is written in a script.  Besides functions and variables, you can define other kinds of things like syntax constructs (see the example for defining an RPN calculator), macros, etc.

This free deal is good until the next version is officially released.

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Daniel Corbier
author of uCalc products
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J-Mac
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2008, 03:46:08 PM »

Ouch! If I liked it, I wouldn't be able to do anything about it after the beta period. Apparently not for the personal/home/casual user!

Thanks!

Jim
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mouser
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« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2008, 05:21:26 PM »

Hi Daniel, I'm just watching the tutorial now.  Very nice  thumbs up
Couple of observations:
  • First, very cool work on the tutorial -- that's actually quite fun (for those who haven't tried it, it uses MS wizard to give instructions and point out various features as it walks you through them).
  • Second, very nice work on the multiple base support, both in input and output.
  • And nice work with the tape measure history and history of past expressions.
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hwtan
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« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2008, 09:19:28 AM »

Comments:

1. Having the words appear one at a time is kind of slow and distracting for me.
2. A better install would be nice... One that doesn't scream 'VB'!
3. Might want to consider upgrading to the .NET framework, personally, I don't like having my PC littered with ActiveX controls.

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Daniel Corbier
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« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2008, 05:24:46 PM »

Thanks for the feedback.  I can't publicly post the registration code here in this forum.  But you can all get the free registration, by sending a request to the ucalc.com e-mail address, which starts with support followed by the at symbol (or visit http://www.ucalc.com/contact.html ).

J-Mac, I'm not sure I fully understood your comment.  But the beta is still going on, so you can still claim your free license right now (with free upgrade when it comes out), in exchange for your feedback.  You can use it for personal/home use etc.  Anyone can give feedback to receive the free license.

Mouser, thanks for the kudos.

Ethan, I have jotted down your suggestions.  I'm glad you mentioned comment #1.  I received an e-mail from someone who made a similar point.  For a while, I thought there wasn't a way to change this.  But just now, I see that MS Agent has a property with several options.  One option is to not display the balloon at all when it speaks.  Another option is to display the text all at once, instead of word by word.  Now the question is to find a user-friendly way of letting you toggle this feature.  Or would everyone prefer that the text be displayed all at once by default?

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Daniel Corbier
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http://www.ucalc.com
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J-Mac
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« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2008, 06:20:19 PM »

J-Mac, I'm not sure I fully understood your comment.  But the beta is still going on, so you can still claim your free license right now (with free upgrade when it comes out), in exchange for your feedback.  You can use it for personal/home use etc.  Anyone can give feedback to receive the free license.

Daniel Corbier
author of uCalc products
http://www.ucalc.com


Sorry Daniel. I didn't follow the first link in your post, as I saw the "download" and thought that it was a direct download link. Instead I clicked on the parent link in your signature and then looked at the Fast Math Parser pricing. Sounded like a standard beta version and would be free until you released the full version, after which the price appeared to be $600!

So I misunderstood your intention.  My bad. Sorry!

Jim
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mouser
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« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2008, 06:30:29 PM »

Daniel,

What I'm about to say might give you some feeling of exhaustion because of how much work you've clearly put into that tutorial, but i would *highly* recommend that rather than work on improving this ms agent based tutorial, that you set about making a set of short flash-based "screencasts" demonstrating various features.

Let me explain:
  • The interactive tutorials you've created are really nice and fun, and are perfect for someone who has already downloaded and decided to use your program -- they will teach them how to use it to it's fullest.
  • But what you also need and what this tutorial doesn't help much with, is some shorter screencasts (video movies) that can be viewed over the internet without the user having to download anything.
  • The screencasts don't have to teach people how to do stuff -- their main purpose will be to demonstrate cool features quickly so users without much time can check out if you're program is a good fit for them.  I advise making a few of them showing different features rather than 1 big long one, so they load quickly and don't require a big commitment.
  • There are several tools you can use to make these screencasts, both free and commercial.
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Daniel Corbier
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« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2008, 11:04:39 PM »

That's an excellent suggestion.  In fact, I've tried something like this already, and it's been in place for some time.  When you visit http://www.ucalc.com , click on the Screenshots button (next to the More... and Download buttons) for the Graphing Calculator.  It's a kind of Flash slideshow, with screenshots of various features.  Is it something like this you had in mind?

Don't hesitate to make suggestions.  I may not be able to act on every single suggestion, but I'd still like to hear them all.
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Daniel Corbier
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« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2008, 05:59:02 PM »

Today, I have uploaded a new beta for the uCalc Graphing Calculator. Please visit http://www.ucalc.com and follow the link to the download page. The tutorial now includes navigation buttons. These same buttons can be programmed to do whatever else you want. There is a new tutorial topic that explains how to work with the new programmable buttons. The tutorial also is smoother overall. For instance, the words in the speech bubble no longer appear one at a time.

I'd like to thank those who have given feedback so far. I look forward to receiving even more feedback. You can still request a free license in exchange for your feedback. Thanks.

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Daniel Corbier
author of uCalc products
http://www.ucalc.com
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Curt
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« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2008, 08:21:41 AM »

I never made it to the testing...


What may be missing on a fully updated XP??
- I am not going to click OK until I have an idea of what this is about.



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J-Mac
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« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2008, 01:05:02 PM »

I never made it to the testing...


What may be missing on a fully updated XP??
- I am not going to click OK until I have an idea of what this is about.
 (see attachment in previous post)


Well, it sounds like the application installer package wants to update system files - but you knew that!

Personally, I wouldn't want any application's installer pack to be updating my system files. Some older system files might be there because another installed application needs them to run. I've seen this before on my computer.

Plus uCalc is not telling you which files it wants to update. So if this updating of system files happens to leave your machine a mess, you will have to do a fair amount of diagnostics before you could even begin to try and fix it. If it by chance renders your machine unable to boot up, you'd better have a nice, new image of your system available to boot from!

Jim
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Curt
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« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2008, 03:18:45 PM »

... Some older system files might be there because another installed application needs them to run.
2. A better install would be nice... One that doesn't scream 'VB'!

I realize that only yesterday another program insisted that I should get VB6KO.dll - which I did. MAYBE it degraded the already installed VB6 version? Can this be the reason? I will try to remove it, and see what happens.



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Curt
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« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2008, 04:26:47 PM »

... another program insisted that I should get VB6KO.dll - which I did. MAYBE it degraded the already installed VB6 version? Can this be the reason? I will try to remove it, and see what happens.

- yes, that did the trick.

However, when I extracted the uCalc container, I renamed the new folder into uCalc. I shouldn't have done so:




2. A better install would be nice... One that doesn't scream 'VB'!


« Last Edit: October 03, 2008, 04:29:51 PM by Curt » Logged
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