SI-Card Reader for HP 48

When to use hp48 for reading SI-cards?

SPORTident cards can be read out by PCs connected to a SI station. It could be inconvenient to operate a PC in some situations such as small competitions, training etc. SPORTident offers a solution for this problem by introducing a printing station and a portable thermal printer. If you don't want to buy a printer pack from SPORTident, but want some highly portable solution you can consider this hp48 program. You have to own a HP 48G(X) calculator, optionally a HP 82240B thermo printer and the necesseary cabling to connect the calculator to the SI station equipped with serial link cable.

The HP 48 SI-card reader program

The program can be downloaded from here.

Installation, setup

The program is provided as an HP 48 Library. First download the library to your calculator. Install the auto-attaching library into a port (See the HP 48G Series User's Guide chapter 28 if you need help). Then create a directory in the HP 48 and go to the directory. Press the Library button and select the library named SI. You will see the main menu of the reader program. Select the SETUP menupoint.
Settings dialog
Here you can set the 0-time of the competition in 24-hour format. If the control stations operate in training mode set 0-time to 0. If you have (and want to use the thermo printer) check the PRINT CARDDATA option. The program accumulates the data read out from cards into a variable in the directory in which it was invoked. This variable is called 'cards'. The NTH menupoint recalls the n-th stored carddata. Checking the OVERRIDE STORED CARDDATA option in the SETUP creates this variable if it does not exist or empties the variable.

Other part of the setup is to specify the communication parameters. Select left-shift I/O then IOPAR. Set wire, binary, 4800 baud, parity none, translate 0.
I/O setup
If you use the IR thermo printer select right-shift I/O then from the menu the Print... submenu. Set port to Infrared. If your printer has fresh batteries reduce the delay time to 1.2. Uncheck DBL-SPACE. Leave the dialog with NXT, OK.

Using the program

To use the program you have to connect a SI station programmed to card read out. The program uses the handshaking mode, so do not program the SI station to Autosend mode. As you can see in the picture I used the standard HP-PC serial connection cable and a small self-made 9 pin male-male null modem cable to connect the hp to the end of the SI station cable.

SI station connected to hp48

After the SI station is connected and started start the program (library). After the setup press READ.
Reading carddata
The program waits for a card readout. Punch a Si-card as at normal read out. When the station emits a beep you can remove the card. In some second the hp displays the card data on the screen or prints it on the thermal printer. The screen list can be scrolled by up-down arrows. After the printing or quiting the screen display you get back to library main menu and can read out the next card.

Displaying resultsDisplaying results
Screen outputPrinter output

In the screen output you can see only the leg times, the printer output shows the punching times too. If there is a starting punch then the punching times are given relative to it else they are given in competition time. If the start punch is used the running time and the first leg time is calculated otherwise the competition time is given. The start punch is given in competition time.

If you want to retrieve a previously read carddata then type the reading order number and press NTH. The program will display or print the given carddata.

Technical information

The carddata can be transfered to a PC for further processing. The 'cards' variable stores the read carddata. It is a list containing a sublist per card. These lists contain carddata as binary integers. The structure of the list is the following: SI card identifier, Startnumber, Start time, Finish time, max. 30 punching in controlcode and punching time pairs, and finally controlcodes of punches over 30 without time. The times are strored as absoute station times in seconds in 12-hour format.

Using the HP 82240B IR thermo printer it is possibble to read and print two cards per minute assuming 15 punches per card.

Legal stuff

The program (library) is a freeware, but it is not public domain. Copyright is reserved. The author makes no warranty with respect to the software or documentation and is not liable for any losses resulting from the use of the software. This software is developed independently from SPORTident.