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    Re: Ti-86
    From: Bill Murdoch
    Date: 1999 Oct 31, 7:35 PM

    In a message dated 10/30/99 9:54:10 PM Eastern Standard Time,
    delta611@EARTHLINK.NET writes:
    > if you (Bill) don't mind would you take a look and
    >  give me your advise...They say (or it reads) that its built it..If its
    >  not ROM what good it is..???
    I sent StarPath the following note:
    I tried to down load the StarPilot User's Manual but was not able to do so.
    Perhaps you could answer a question for me.  Once loaded into the memory of
    the TI-86 calculator, can the program be erased ?  More specifically, can the
    memory be reset from the keypad, and is the program lost if the AAA batteries
    and the lithium battery both become discharged ?
    To which they quickly replied:
    HI Bill, thanks for the inquiry,
    we have a new version of the manual which should be ready by the 5th...
    yes you can erase the memory if you like,,,, very nearly impossible to do
    so by accident.... must do a specific series of key strokes and say yes i
    want to erase the program at each step... but a virture of this program is
    indeed that you can use the calculator for other programs and then
    reinstall the StarPilot if you like to do this.
    the sequence for reinstalling the program is on line at the download page...
    if both sets of batteries become discharged the memory will be lost and you
    will have to reinstall.... again, however, with the backup system they have
    it is unlikely you would have to do this.... if you did, however, it takes
    just 4 minutes to do so....
    my feeling is that it is much more likley to get damaged by getting wet or
    getting lost  than by having the batteries run out...by the time a Li
    battery runs out that we ship today, the entire world of calculators and
    computers will be different!  the StarPilot will, electronically speaking,
    be an antique.
    My experience with the TI-81, 82, and 83 calculators (I have never held a
    TI-86) is that with care the program is safe in RAM.  You can clear the
    memory or reset the calculator, but you would have to do it on purpose.  You
    can also reset the calculator with a strange set of keystrokes (shift second
    7, I think) that brings up the version number of the software.  The most
    usual way of accidently erasing the program is to let the AAA batteries run
    down to the point that you can not see the display, then thinking the
    calculator to be off when in fact it is on, remove the AAA batteries; the
    lithium battery can not both keep the memory up and run the calculator so the
    memory is lost.
    What good is it ?   ...   Cruising World and Practical Boat Owner both
    published programs that I wrote for sun sight reduction on TI calculators and
    I sold a sun/moon/planets/stars/the-works program for the TI-82 for a couple
    of years in the classified ads of Ocean Navigator.  A lot of people programed
    the calculators and used the programs.  From the letters and phone calls I
    got, the programs worked as intended and they had a good time with them.
    Bill Murdoch

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