MULTIPLY LIKE IT’S 1999: Remember
playing snake making parabolas on your trusty TI-84 in Trigonometry class? Turns out that pastime is alive and well. In an age of endless iterations, The Washington Post suggests that the one “unstoppable” technology that has stayed constant in the classroom is the tool that first taught many of us how to iterate functions.
But at $150, how has the clunky, black-and-white box with 1/125 the memory of an iPod manage to stay the tool of choice? That no-frills approach actually turns out to be TI-84’s secret weapon. As president of Texas Instruments Peter Balyta said, “while it’s tempting for us to build in WiFi, Bluetooth, audio, a camera, a whole bunch of things...teachers don’t want us to.” They simply want a basic tool that students can use “at home when they’re doing homework and also a tool they can bring in during their most important exam.” So don’t toss your old TI-84 yet--that’s a hand-me-down that can be used for generations to come.