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Math Help - What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

  1. #1
    Junior Member astartleddeer's Avatar
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    What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    Hello,

    I've always been curious about the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator. The buttons it corresponds to are A, B, C, D, E, F, M, X, Y and also Ranint by which are all in red.

    I've made calculated attempts to try and play with them and come to a conclusion why they are there, but I have no idea why. Everything either just equates to zero or a 'Syntax Error' pops up.

    If so, could someone out there provide a few examples how they work.

    Thank you for your attention.
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  2. #2
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    The "ALPHA" button gives alphabetic variables. I'm not clear on you saying "in red" because caculators by different manufacturers, and sometimes different models by the same manufacturer, will be set up differently. On the TI-89, for example, on the upper right of many keys, from "=" on the upper left to "." on the lower right, in a gray color are the letters A through w (but not including t- X, Y, Z, and T have separate keys because they are commonly used with specific meanings in formulas). That allows you to name variables in formulas.

    For example, if, again on the TI-89, you enter "3" "STO" "alpha" "=", the number "3" will be stored in a memory location labeled "a". If you enter "2" "STO" "alpha" "(" (which has a small "B" above it) , the number "2" will be stored in a memory location labeled "b". If you now enter "alpha" "=" "+" "alpha" ")" "ENTER" (which is the same as "a+ b Enter") you will see "5" on th screen.

    If all else fails, read the users manual!
    Last edited by HallsofIvy; July 4th 2012 at 11:02 AM.
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  3. #3
    Junior Member astartleddeer's Avatar
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    I have a Casio fx-83GT.

    I don't understand. Please could you show an example.
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    Quote Originally Posted by astartleddeer View Post
    Hello,

    I've always been curious about the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator. The buttons it corresponds to are A, B, C, D, E, F, M, X, Y and also Ranint by which are all in red.

    I've made calculated attempts to try and play with them and come to a conclusion why they are there, but I have no idea why. Everything either just equates to zero or a 'Syntax Error' pops up.

    If so, could someone out there provide a few examples how they work.

    Thank you for your attention.
    Quote Originally Posted by astartleddeer View Post
    I have a Casio fx-83GT.

    I don't understand. Please could you show an example.
    1. A, B, C, ..., F are the names of "storage places".

    You can write values into these places by using the STO = SHIFT RCL command.

    2. Example:

    3 + 4 * 5 STO D

    stores the value 23 into the cell D.

    3. To read the contents of this cell use the buttons ALPHA D.

    Example ALPHA D^2 STO A

    writes the value 529 into A. (Remember in cell D is still the value 23)
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  5. #5
    Junior Member astartleddeer's Avatar
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    YES! IT WORKS! Thank you to the both of you
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  6. #6
    Junior Member astartleddeer's Avatar
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    I'm sorry but there is one last thing. How does the 'Ranint' button work?
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    Thanks from astartleddeer
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    Junior Member astartleddeer's Avatar
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    @ Skeeter

    Why didn't I think of that

    Ok, I think that's pretty much it folks. Once again, thank you.
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    Example..
    Find the r00ts of
    x^4+3x^3-5x+2=0
    instead of solving, you can input the above equation to you calculator by using alpha function and solve button.
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  10. #10
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    Re: What is the ALPHA button on a modern scientific calculator?

    Thank you skeeter for the link you gave, I was trying to undo some solutions also.


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