So apparently TI has released a new operating system for the TI-84+, more than two years after the previous version. The last OS update was in 2007 with version 2.43.
Although it was released officially on February 15, it was leaked at least a few weeks earlier. I’ve tested the leaked version too.
The most notable change seems to be the MathPrint feature, which formats expressions graphically instead of linearly as in older versions:
However, this pretty printing sometimes fails for very complex expressions. For example, it cannot render more than 4 nested levels of exponents. If you need to do stuff like that, however, you can still switch back to classic (no-mathprint) mode.
Excluding the Mathprint feature I think there are several new functions and a bunch of new B_CALLs which I’m not going to cover here.
There are some things that aren’t so great about this update. For one thing, Basic programs seem to run much slower than before, perhaps with a 2-4x decrease in speed (not measured, just a guess).
This doesn’t really matter since you can always disable Mathprint and the speed returns to normal.
Also a few applications (mostly ones that use undocumented features) are broken.
Perhaps most annoying is this screen:
What annoys me here is that this screen shows up every time you turn on the calculator. Yes TI I already know about the new goddamn ALPHA key feature!
Of course, you can make it ‘not show again’ but that only lasts until the next RAM reset. Mostly likely the state of the screen is stored in some variable that gets cleared on ram reset. If you reset your ram often, like I do, this screen quickly gets very annoying.
I think TI could have done better with this screen.
It surprises me that only the 84+ gets an OS update. The latest 83+ OS was 1.19, released in 2006. Perhaps this is coming to the 83+ as well?
Overall there’s quite a lot of new features. My calculator is starting to feel more and more like a TI-89. Yay.