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Jam Calculators was a TI-Basic programming group primarily for the TI-83 and TI-83+ graphing calculators. They released a few notable programs including Brix, Fast Food, Tic-Tac-Toe, Poker, WormTunnel, and Pong. In October 2001, Texas Instruments named their Basketball Hardcore Style game as one of the month's featured programs. They also had a large collection of TI-Basic programming tutorials covering a wide variety of topics:
- The Basics of TI Programming — Goes over most of the commands that you will use in TI-BASIC.
- Memory Conservation — All of the little tricks to save space and memory in your programs.
- Tricks and Glitches — All of the cool tricks and glitches in the 83, 83+ and 83+SE.
- For Loops Tutorial — Everything you will ever need to know about For loops.
- getKey Tutorial — Basic and advanced aspects of the getKey command.
- For Loops — Everything you will ever need to know about For loops.
- Strings Tutorial — Everything related to strings.
- Screen Shots — How to take screen shots.
- Notable programs/games (including screenshots)
- Notable tutorials/documents
- List of their programs and games
- Include a screenshot for some of their best games/programs
- Adam Lange — founder
- Jeff Perry — admin
- Eric Metcalf
- Trey Hastings
- Chris Sologuk
- Stephen Wensley
- Mike Gould
(Taken from chronology page)
- August 1999 — Adam Lange gets his first graphing calculator. It's a TI-80 and it barely works. Adam knows nothing about programming at this point however he does wonder what the PRGM button does. Jeff Perry gets a TI-83 and just like Adam, he knows nothing about programming.
- October 1999 — Adam is starting to get comfortable with using a graphing calculator, although he still does not know anything about programming.
- January 2000 — Jeff Perry makes his first program. It is a very simple "Display, Pause, ClrHome" program, yet we are all amazed by it. Basically, it makes fun of our P.E. coach, Roger Britson. Today, this program is looked upon as the very first JAM program, although we were not an organized group at that time. Jeff will not make another program for nearly a year.
- June 2000 — Adam and Jeff pass their Freshman year of high school and begin to prepare for the following year. They still know next to nothing about calculator programming.
- August 2000 — Adam and Jeff enter into their Sophomore year. This will turn out to be a huge year for them in terms of programming. They will soon learn many things and become extremely skilled.
- September 2000 — Jeff teaches Adam the three commands that he knows: Disp, Pause and ClrHome. Adam is intrigued and goes home that night and begins to make simple programs. Soon, Adam and Jeff will make many of these primitive programs. Basically, they will just make fun of certain students and/or teachers around campus. One of JAM's closest friends is a strong, athletic, bright young man named Mike Gould. Adam and Jeff taught Mike the only three commands that we knew at that time. And so Mike also made a few small movie programs.
- October 2000 — One of the most important events in JAM history occurred during the month of November. Adam and Jeff had basically mastered the Disp, Pause and ClrHome commands (as though there was anything to master) and Adam started to talk about making a long program, instead of the short blips that they were currently doing. Now, we know that there is little that one can do with those 3 commands, but at that time, that's all we had. And so, Adam set out to create his "long movie" program.
- October 2000 — Adam finishes the "long movie." It is called Booty and it is basically a comedy story of a kid at our school who commits acts of violence against the school. It also shows some cheap dancing. It may not sound funny to any of you, but it was a big hit among many of our friends. It's like a relic that we all look back upon. If you want to see the program for yourself, here it is. And it was actually during this time that JAM was officially founded. It was Adam Lange who came up with the name and introduced it to Jeff and Mike. They both liked the idea of forming a calculator group despite the fact that we only knew a handful of commands.
- November 2000 — So after the founding, Adam decided to create a sequel to the popular Booty program. He titled it Booty 2: Revenge From the Grave. It was about a student (who died in the original program) that comes back from the dead in order to seek vengeance on Mike Gould. The program tanked. It basically wasn't funny at all. To this day, we still don't know what the heck Adam was thinking. Booty 2 is no longer available and is now only a mere memory. But the memory faded fast as we began to learn new commands and concepts. We first learned Output, then For loops, then scrolling, then variables and finally Prompt. It seems like a lot to learn in one month, but it actually wasn't that hard. We began to make various graphics programs and lots of math formulas.
- December 2000 — Adam and Jeff continue to learn more and more commands and begin to make small "practice games." We had enough knowledge to create small and boring games like "Guess the Number", but we never really knew enough to make high quality games. And then finally, we learned the biggest command of them all: getkey. We finally had the ability to make programs that people would actually enjoy playing. So with this new knowledge, Adam and Jeff set out to create some quality games. Adam decides to make an RPG called Horse Racing and Jeff starts work on a game called Breeder (it was never finished).
- January 2001 — Adam finishes Horse Racing and releases it at school. It is a semi-hit, but Adam is happy nonetheless. Adam didn't do a lot of serious programming for a while. He basically just sat back and observed the various responses to Horse Racing. Jeff, on the other hand, was doing some experiments with lists and matrices.
- February 2001 - Adam begins to make a Tic-Tac-Toe game, but he quickly gives up because of his insufficient knowledge of matrices. Jeff decides to take over the project and in just a few weeks, he was finished. He called it Tic-Toe and it turned out to be a pretty good game. It was Jeff's first major game. Adam had been wanting to make a sports game for a while and so he decided to create a basketball game. The code was very disorganized and therefore, difficult to complete. But when it was finished, he named it Basketball Hardcore Style kind of as a joke. When he released it, nobody was very fond of it. Next, Jeff made a Pong game. It was fairly slow and not very popular, but Jeff was proud of it.
- March 2001 — And now Mike Gould comes back into the picture. For the past few months, Mike had only been making small math programs. That was his "specialty." So he decided to write a huge math program with as many formulas as he could fit in. After about two weeks, he finished it and named the program 30 Formulas for obvious reasons. To our surprise, it became extremely popular. People just seemed to love it. And not only at our school but at ticalc.org as well. To this day, it is one of the most successful TI-83+ math programs ever. After that craziness, Jeff and Adam started work on two different games. Jeff started a nibbles game that he called Jake the Snake while Adam was working on BlackJack. It took quite a while for Adam to complete BlackJack, but he was proud of it nonetheless. However, after it was released it fell under a lot of controversy because it did not go by the "one card up, one card down" rule.
- April 2001 — Jeff began work on his new game, Chess. Adam bet him five dollars that he would give up on it. But by the end of the month, Jeff finished the project and Adam lost the bet. It was very successful among Chess lovers and people seemed to enjoy it. Towards the end of the month, Adam started a project called "The Fisherman". It was an RPG based in the 1700's where you were a struggling fisherman that had to catch enough fish to feed his hungry family. Adam was very excited about the project.
- May 2001 — Adam scraps "The Fisherman". He decided that the game was going in a very bad direction. If he would have continued, it would have been a disaster.
- June 2001 — During a car ride to California, Adam begins work on a new game called Cracks. It takes him only 45 minutes to complete.
- July 2001 — Adam gets the webspace for jamcalc.org. Work immediately begins. Adam begins to talk to a guy named Eric Metcalf via e-mail after playing one of his games, Poker. They talk about programming and the new webspace. Adam invites Eric to become a member of JAM and he says yes.
- August 2001 — Adam starts on a new game, Maze. It takes him about two weeks to complete. It is met with mixed reviews. Jeff and Mike think that the mazes are far too easy to complete, but Adam sticks by his program.