Scientific Calculator Tutorial - Shift Keys

Even the simplest scientific calculators now have more functions on them than the number of keys on the key pad can accomodate. Therefore, most scientific calculators use "shift" keys to allow more than one function to be implemented with the same key.

Color is usually used to show which functions are shift key functions. Consider the picture to the right. Notice the key in the circle on the right. The function "LN" is in white on the key. This means that it is the main function for that key. Just hitting that key will implement the "LN" function. The ex function is also on the key but in yellow. This means that the yellow shift key (the "2nd" key) needs to be pressed before the ex in order to implement ex.


Again consider the picture to the right. Notice the key in the circle on the right. The function "LOG" is in white on the key. This means that it is the main function for that key. Just hitting that key will implement the "LOG" function. The x! function is also in white but it is above the key. This means that the white shift key (the "3rd" key) needs to be pressed before the x! in order to implement x!.

The exact way shift keys are used on your calculator may be different but the same basic principles will apply. Look at the manual for your calculator if you still have it. It will explain the details. If you do not have the manual, or cannot make sense of it, see your instructor. It will not take long to be able to understand how this works.





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Date Last Modified - 4/7/99
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