Polishing It Up


You're almost there. The finish line is in sight. You've finished the program, now all you have to do is get it out there. Before you go and upload it onto ticalc.org or any other site, though there are a few things you need to do.


What good is a program if the user doesn't know how to use it? In order to allow for optimal use of a program, the user needs to know how the program is used, what certain keys do, etc.

Here's a list of things that you should include in the readme:

  1. Name of your program. Kind of important, so that the user knows that this is the real deal. It's also courteous to include your name, but seeing how things are going today, this isn't necessary.
  2. Installation note. Tell the user how to make the program work on their calculator. The less things the user has to do the better.
  3. General information. Include information on what the program is supposed to do. This is the section where you gloat … I mean tell the user all the features that your program can do. The more you explain, the better for the reader. If you're creating a game with a story behind it, tell the user what the story is. This doesn't mean tell them everything, just a brief synopsis of what's going on at the start of the game.
  4. Keys. Which key does what? It's important that the user knows what button to press to get the desired results. Include a table of keys as well as what they'll do in the program.
  5. Graphics. If your program has icons/graphics that may in any way, shape, or form confuse the user (assume the user is incredibly un-intelligent for this section), explain what they are.
  6. Contact information. Not really necessary, but sometimes you may want to include contact information so that you can get reviews on you game, reports on bugs that you may have missed, etc.

Screen shots

Sometimes you may want to include screen shots of yourself using the program just to give users an idea of what the program looks like before trying it out for themselves. To get screen shots, there are a few ways.


PindurTI is an emulator for the TI-73, 83+ calculators (no 83+ silvers/84's, sorry). To take animated screen shots with PindurTI, follow the instructions on link.


Another emulator. Go here to download Virtual TI. You'll also need this (VTI capture) to take still/animated screen shots.


Another program that captures screen shots from emulators. Here's a link to the download: CalcCapture.

Source code

If you wish, you may include the source code. This is not necessary, and sometimes you may want to withhold the source of your program. Releasing your source allows other users to learn how you wrote the program, and if you let them, modify it. Again, include the source at your own digression. Generally if you don't plan on ever changing this program again, you may want to include the source so that others can improve it (giving you credit, of course).


You're finally done. Upload your program onto the web if you want and watch the masses download it and use it. Hopefully. Anyways, at this point you have a couple of options. You can continue on with the next tutorial, or you can drop this project. It's up to you.

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