That song might have had that title if it had been written today. So much is being made of making everything wireless- soon mothers will be able to  monitor the toothbrushing habits of their children, for each toothbrush entering the house will have it’s own IP address. No wonder we are sorely in need of the change to IPv6!

One place where is seems to make some sense is in the case of the current crop of top-line calculators from Texas Instruments –


Anyone who has taken a calculus class in the last 20 years is sure to also have a great deal of experience plugging figures into a TI-8X graphic calculator, and I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling a certain pang of geeky nostalgia for the TI-85, a standard-issue tool for high school kids in the 1990’s.

Technology has come a long way since the 6 MHz Zilog Z80 processor, but Texas Instruments isn’t retiring the popular calculators just yet. Instead, it has moved a significant number of those old devices into the wireless age.

Today, the company announced its TI-Nspire Navigator system, which links a classroom full of graphic calculators together for collaborative teaching, polling, testing, and grading.

Supporting devices from the TI-83 Plus (1999) all the way up to the current TI-Nspire (which offers wireless connectivity of its own), the TI-Navigator system lets students hook their graphic calculators into wireless hubs that communicate with the teacher’s PC for lessons and testing.

The program has been piloted by about 3,000 students nationwide and the hardware can be bought through independent instructional dealers.

Since there’s a wealth of higher math freeware, TI-Nspire Navigator it may not be the most efficient or versatile way to network a classroom, but you have to admit, it certainly is stretching the life of TI’s hardware to an amazing length.

Pretty cool, and I can see how it will be very useful. One thing –  I took Calculus during that time frame the author speaks of, and got an A. BTW, those TI calcs were not allowed on tests, and we did not do anything with them in class. Also, I owned an H-P calculator, not a TI.

Amazing how things change.


Marvin-the-martianI got here from Mars with less computational power! I’m getting one for the trip home…

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