Greetings from somewhere on the road


New Member
Where to start. New guy here obviously. I am a small fleet owner contracting to various carriers. I personally operate a unit for Fedex and could be anywhere in the U.S. or Canada reachable by road with my other units also anywhere in either country. In an almost prior lifetime, about 35 years ago, I took a semester of statistics as a business department elective. I enjoyed the class and made an A but then it was the first semester course. Anyway, I decided to play with it again and recently got an ebook on statistics. The book suggests either a TI83 or TI84. What do you guys think for a casual user? Go with one of those that matches what the book talks about or go with something less expensive like a TI36 for about 1/4 the cost? Anything else I should look into besides a calculator? Thanks for any and all input.


Ambassador to the humans
You could always skip the calculator and use your computer for the calculations. I haven't used a handheld calculator in quite some time.


New Member
I thought about that or an app for my phone but often work at a tv tray size table while on the road so a notebook and stats book don't leave much room for the computer and the phone is a great phone but not as good at other things as something purpose made for the task.


Ambassador to the humans
Then I guess an 83 or an 84 could work. I don't know what the 83 has built into it but I do know that the 84 does have quite a few functions specific to statistics. I think it can even do a t-test. But you could probably get away with something like the 36 if you're doing stuff by hand because the stuff that you need more computational power for you would probably want to use your laptop for anyways.


First let me say welcome aboard LDB. :) Glad to see people picking up stats for fun in their spare time.

LDB said:
I decided to play with it again and recently got an ebook on statistics.
What do you plan to use the stats for or just looking to challenge the brain etc...?

The 83 plus or silver or maybe it's the silver plus can do pretty much what the 84 can do. The best you can get is a one way anova out of an 83 or 84 though. I suppose you could dummy code and run it through the regression analysis though. The TI84 was my stats I companion but after that the math became too difficult for the calculator to handle without a great deal of hand work or code writing. But if you're on the road and have no access to a computer it would probably be my choice.

Now my sales pitch...

I'm with Dason with the computer. A TI whatever costs about 100bucks. Buy a cheapy laptop for 300 and you'll be much more pleased with the results. The program R is a very powerful and free program that you could download and does not require the Internet to use so...

End of sales pitch :)


Cookie Scientist
Yeah... you really are gonna want to use R, not a handheld TI-80anything, if you plan to study stats in basically any depth. Have you looked into one of those "netbook" laptops? Some of those are pretty **** small... somewhere on the order of maybe three TI-83s or something. And relatively cheap too.


New Member
I've got a Sony VAIO something or other that goes with me and an iPad as well. I doubt I'll go any deeper than the equivalent of my one semester elective stats class way back when. I'm doing it as my current "hobby" activity just for the heck of it and maybe just a little bit due to the campaign statistics onslaught coming soon. I'll look into R (never heard of it before tonight) but at 54 I'm of the use the calc in place of the slide rule generation. Also, I can take a notebook and calc easily into Denny's or wherever whereas my notebook gets in the way of eating.


Can't make spagetti
well... i'm actually gonna have to work a little bit as a devil's advocate here and mention that my TI was actually very, VERY useful while i was working on my degree... i have a TI-89 though (with 3-D graphics, full blown CAS system, C+ programmability extension and i can even make it work basic logistic regression models...) HOWEVER, i did find that the TI83 worked just fine for what we saw in most of our classes... i see merit on the fact that, even if it's tedious, if you work very simple examples by hand you can learn a lot about how things work... i mean, it's obvious that if you wanna jump into things more seriously you'll definitely need something to program on... but if the stats is just an on-the-side kind of gig for you, knowing how to use a TI well can get you very far...