Curr Vitae
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Personal Details

Name: Colin Robert Croft
Date of birth: 24th July, 1960
Current address: xx  xxxxxxx
BALGA 6061
Western Australia
Phone: +61 8 xxxx xxxx
Marital status: Single, no dependents
Driving licences: A, K and L (manual & automatic, car and motorcycle)
Primary language: English (native speaker)
Other languages: German (moderate level of proficiency, long out of practice)


1988 - 1991:

1982 - 1983:

1979 - 1982:

1974 - 1977:


Curtin University.
Graduate Diploma in Computing
University of Western Australia.
Diploma of Education - Mathematics major, Computing minor
University of Western Australia
Bachelor of Science (Mathematics).
Units taken included Physics, German and Philosophy.
Scarborough Senior High School.
Final year units: Mathematics II, Mathematics III, 
   Physics, Chemistry, English, English Literature, German, Music.
Tertiary Entrance score: 447.6 of a possible 510.

Professional Associations

Member of the West Australian College of Teachers (WACOT)
Member of the Mathematics Association of Western Australia (MAWA)
Member of the Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers (AAMT)



2006: “Mastering the hp 39gs & hp 40gs”

An alternative manual, written under contract to Hewlett-Packard for release with the two new models, the hp 39gs and hp 40gs. This is an updated and enlarged version of an earlier text. It is available as a free download from the Help page on this site.

2004: “Solution Groups”  web tutorials

Under contract to Hewlett Packard I produced a series of web based tutorials on using the newly released hp39g+. This is a set of approximately 120 pages of tutorials in PDF format and can be found at

2004: “Mastering the hp39g+”

This book is an updated and enlarged version of the earlier text “Mastering the HP38G” which I wrote in 1996. It was written under contract to Hewlett Packard and is available as a free download from their web site in PDF format. It is fully hyper-linked and contains an appendix on the Computer Algebra System on the hp40g.

2003: "Matrix Transformations - A Geometric Approach using the Parametric Aplet"

This paper was published in Cross Section (Vol. 14, No. 2) and outlined how to use the Parametric aplet to illustrate graphically the transformations using 2x2 matrices.

2003: "The Artistry of Mathematics"

This paper was published in Cross Section (Vol. 14, No. 2) and showed how functions with restricted domains can be used as an enrichment activity to draw pictures and gain a better understanding of functions and domains.

2002: "Linear Functions 1"

This maths text book is one module of the Students' Integrated Maths Module project by OTRNet Publications. See for further information.

2002: The HP HOME View (

Starting in 1996, I created an extensive web site devoted to the needs of teachers and students who use Hewlett Packard graphical calculators. The site includes extensive help pages, a FAQ page, all relevant utilities, aplets and programs for teaching maths and science as well as games. In 1996, when the HP38G was released, Hewlett Packard released a collection of 50 aplets as support for teachers but did not offer any more after that. My web site currently contains more than 100 more teaching aplets and programs. Currently nearly all of the material, other than games, written outside Hewlett Packard was created by me.

2000: "Investigating Mathematics Through Patterns" (Books 1 and 2)

Under contract to Hewlett Packard, I wrote two books of teacher support material which were distributed extensively as free promotional material in Australia, the United States, South-East Asia, and India.

1998: "Some Observations Regarding the Use of Graphical Calculators in the USA and Australia"
Australian Mathematics Teacher, Vol. 54, No. 3, Aug. 1998.

A copy of this article can be found at my web site in the Help section.

1988: "Mathematics in a Hospital"

This textbook was published by Hawker-Brownlow. Typesetting was done using Pagemaker.

1998: "Tips and Tricks"

I contributed a number of small articles on the use of the HP38G to the "Tips" section of the HPC magazine published by Hewlett Packard.

1996: "Mastering the HP38G Graphical Calculator - A Guide for Students and Teachers".

This alternative to the manual has sold extensively in Western Australia and a large number were purchased by Hewlett Packard in 1998 for distribution as free publicity material to schools world wide.


Miscellaneous Professional Activities

2007: Contracted by the Mathematics Association of W.A. to perform a two day professional development session for a small group of teachers from the north of Western Australia. The aim was to raise their ability with the HP graphical calculators up to a sufficient level that they would be able to perform their own professional development when they returned home.

2007: Contracted as the mathematics writer by the ASISTM Synchrotron Project, a federally funded project to produce cross-curriculum material linking the Mathematics and Science syllabi under the theme of the Melbourne Synchrotron.

2007: Contracted to provide a two hour introduction to CAS systems for the HP calculators at a HODs mass inservice conducted by CathEd and AISWA.

2005/6: Alpha tester and beta tester for the hp39gs and hp40gs released in early 2006. Proof-reader for the official HP manual.

2004: Requested to provide information on the HP Computer Algebra System to the calculator advisory board of the Curriculum Council for W.A.

2004:  I presented a session "An Introduction to the HP CAS" at the State Mathematics Conference in Bunbury, Western Australia.

2004:  I was requested to provide information on the HP CAS system to the calculator advisory board of the Curriculum Council for W.A.

2004:  I was a beta tester for the new connectivity software for the hp 39g+.

2003:  I was a beta tester for the new hp 39g+ graphical calculator.

2000:  As part of an HP/Palm collaboration project code named Prometheus, I was asked to evaluate a new type of graphical calculator design. I was asked to assess its suitability for use with pre-calculus classes in mathematics.

1999:  As part of a follow up visit to India I again travelled to India and presented to groups of teachers of mathematics in a variety of schools in New Delhi. As part of the visit I was also asked to discuss aspects of the take-up of such technology in the classroom setting, with appropriate demos to exemplify points, at a seminar with the staff of the NCERT (National Council for Educational research and Training). This is the national body with responsibility for developing the curriculum, and promoting the writing of texts to be used (from year 1 to 12), and also responsible for making recommended changes to teacher education. Their main concern was the implications of the new technology for teacher training and re-training.

1998:  At the invitation of the Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers I travelled to India as part of a project partially sponsored by Hewlett Packard and organised by Jeff Baxter to stimulate the uptake of technology in Indian schools. I taught demonstration classes in a variety of schools in New Delhi and gave many talks to groups of teachers. I also addressed Principals at the regional Principal's Conference in New Delhi, giving a demonstration of the capabilities of the calculator and its use in teaching mathematics. At the end of the conference the mood was extremely positive and the most common questions on the feedback forms handed out were "How soon can we buy these?" and "Why are they not available now?".

1996: I was requested by the Mathematics Syllabus Coordinator of the Curriculum Council, as part of a group of calculator experts who were also practicing teachers, to analyse the past five years of Tertiary Entrance Examination papers in the light of the proposed introduction of graphical calculators. We reported on what proportion of problems would have needed no revision, minimal revision or would have needed to be discarded if students sitting the examination had had the use of a graphical calculator of whatever brand.

1989: I was a member of the Western Australian Syllabus Sub-Committee which designed the new upper school mathematics courses for Western Australia of "Maths in Practice" and "Modelling with Mathematics".


Computer Languages

Highly proficient in: C, HPBasic, Pascal, Filemaker Pro Scripting language

Moderately proficient in: C++, sRPL, Visual Basic, Fortran, SQL, TI & Casio Basic


Major computer packages used regularly

Microsoft Word
Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Access
Microsoft Frontpage
Efofex Maths Drawing package

Filemaker Pro
HelpKit Helpfile composer
Paintshop Pro
Adobe Acrobat Editor & Distiller


Computer Applications and Graphical Calculator Software

2006: Principal beta tester for new Aplet Development software for the hp 39gs and hp 40gs models.

2005: Principal beta tester for the hp 39gs and hp 40gs model graphical calculators.

2004: Principal alpha and beta tester for the hp 39g+ graphical calculator and for the PC<=>calculator communication software for that model.

2003: I developed an extensive archive of exam papers for use by Year 11 and 12 students studying for their mid-year and end of year examinations. This archive is in the form of a web-site contained on a CD, distributed free of charge to students. In addition to exam papers the CD also contains a great deal of support material for students in the form of programs for the PC and for the HP39G, help files, tips and tricks, web links and other documentation. This archive now forms part of the school intranet instead of being CD based.

2002: During 1996 I was first introduced to the Hewlett Packard HP38G graphical calculator. I began to produce aplets (small applications) and programs for the calculator for use in my own classroom. This drew attention from Hewlett Packard and resulted in sponsorship to various conferences to present on topics relevant to teaching with Hewlett Packard graphical calculators. I subsequently developed a wide range of aplets which are available free of charge via my web site The HP HOME view at This development continues to the present day.

Some of the applications which I have developed have been incorporated into subsequent models of the calculator. For example, the "Quadratic Explorer" and "Trig Explorer" developed as downloadable aplets for the HP38G were incorporated into the BIOS of the HP39G and HP40G. Similarly, the "3x3 Solver" has been included in the BIOS of the hp 40g+.

2002: I created very extensive Powerpoint displays with animations of button presses and resulting screens for the new HP9S scientific calculator and the new HP9G low-end graphical calculator. These were designed to be used by Hewlett Packard as promotional material for distributors.

2002: Electronic User Manual for the HP39G

I used Adobe Acrobat Editor to index and hyperlink the electronic version of the manual for the HP39G and posted it on my web site.

2001: At the request of my school I evaluated the capabilities of the Texas Instruments TI83+ and the Casio CFX9850GB Plus and FX-2 as possible alternatives to the HP39G. My evaluation included the abilities of the calculator in handling the type of mathematics covered in the upper school courses in Western Australia, the resources available to users via the web for each calculator including software, and the power and usability of the programming language provided with each calculator. As part of this process I became proficient to a moderate degree with each of these calculators. I also translated a some of the teaching programs that I had written for the HP39G into each calculator's language noting any difficulties encountered.

2001: Working with a group of programmers, I assisted in the adaptation of an existing PC emulator of the HP48 so that it would also emulate the HP38G and HP39G on a PC. This included a large screen version which could be used by a visually impaired student. This process involved porting many of my aplets to the emulator.

2000: I created a web based "virtual sponsor's desk" for Hewlett Packard at the Virtual Conference 2000, a conference held on the internet and administered by AAMT.

2000: As part of a contract with Hewlett Packard I participated as a team member in the Enterprise project to create the HP39G & HP40G (with CAS). These two new calculators are the successors to the HP38G.

My tasks in this project were to write the Functionality Specifications for the new calculator, to co-ordinate the Keyboard Design Group, to contribute to the User Manual, and to beta test the new calculators. I was also required to evaluate the porting of the Computer Algebra System from the HP49 to the new HP39G. This evaluation included testing, advising on the user interface and proof reading of the manual.

2000: I created a Powerpoint display with animations of button presses and resulting screens for the new HP30S scientific calculator.

2000: I adapted and updated an existing Powerpoint teaching/demonstration display to work with the new HP10B2 business calculator.

1999: In collaboration with a Swiss programmer, I aided in the creation of a new and updated version of the communication software allowing download from a PC to an HP38G or HP39G. I contributed to the user interface, testing at the alpha and beta stages, and I produced the extensive help file.

1998: At the request of Hewlett Packard I designed two aplets for the HP38G for release at the calculator's official launch at NCTM in the USA. I created the user interface and functionality specifications, while the machine code level programming was done by two Hewlett Packard programmers. The result was "Quadratic Explorer" and "Trig Explorer". By 2000 these were considered so crucial to the calculator's success that they were incorporated into the BIOS of the next generation calculator, the HP39G.

1997: At the request of Hewlett Packard, I produced a series of five aplets for the HP38G all of which used the Firmware datalogger with various probes to perform science experiments. These were passed on to the Science Teachers Association for evaluation and later distribution.

1995: I designed, programmed and implemented a reporting system for the school using the scripting language of the Filemaker Pro database. This system continued to be used at my school until 2001 and I was the principal administrator of the system. As part of this task I designed and presented training courses for staff at the school on how to use the package. Many staff were not computer literate and so this involved considerable training in many cases.

1991: As part of my Grad. Dip. Computing, I wrote a package called "Statpack" in the programming language C for use in schools. This package allowed editing and graphing of univariate, bivariate and time series data, giving all relevant descriptive statistics, as well as the simulation of observations on most common random variables. The aim of the project was to make the package as user friendly as possible. Subsequent sales were made to a number of schools in Western Australia but the use of the program phased out as Windows computers became more common.




2007: Presented at the MAWA State Conference on the HP CAS system.

2007: Presented on the HP CAS for MAWA at two venues north and south of the river.

2007: Asked to present on the HP CAS by Catholic Education and AISWA to the heads of Mathematics Depts of independent schools in WA.

2007: Asked to present on the HP CAS by the Western Australian Mathematics Syllabus Committee prior to the introduction of CAS to the curriculum.

2005: Presented a session to staff on tips and tricks for more effective use of the PC and MS Word.

2003: I presented a two hour training seminar to a small group of lecturers from Edith Cowan University on using the HP38G.

2003: At the request of HP I attended the MAWA Conference in Bunbury for the announcement of the new HP39G+. I presented a seminar for teachers with moderate experience with the HP39G on tips and tricks to use when teaching calculus with a graphical calculator.

2003: I presented a professional development session for the Maths Association of WA on use of the HP emulator, use of the Grouped Data aplet and the creation of an Exam Archive CD for upper school students at St. Hilda's A.S.G.

2003: I presented a professional development session for the Maths Association of WA on "Tips and Tricks for the HP39G".

2002: I presented a professional development session for the Maths Association of WA on "Advanced use of the ADK and HPGComm Software" concerned with the storage of HP39G notes and programs on a PC and their repair when corrupted.

2001: I attended the Mathematics Association of Western Australia's annual State Conference in Bunbury, presenting papers on "Teaching Functions and Calculus with an HP graphical calculator" and on the capabilities of the new HP30S scientific calculator.

2001: I conducted professional development sessions for the mathematics staff at Scotch College and PLC on upgrading to use the new HP39G.

2000: I attended the ATCM '00 conference at Chiang Mai University, in Chiang Mai, Thailand, presenting papers on teaching probability and statistics using random simulations on a graphical calculator, and on teaching trigonometry using a graphical calculator.

2000: I attended the MANSWA conference in Sydney, presenting on "Developing Calculus Concepts with an HP38G".

2000: At the instigation of Hewlett Packard, I travelled to Malaysia for a conference with the Malaysian Ministry of Education and the Dean of the University of Malaysia regarding issues and problems with the introduction of graphical calculators into an education system.

2000: I presented to groups of teachers in Singapore for Hewlett Packard as a guest of the Ministry of Education. I was asked to address the question of how the HP38G could be used in the Cambridge Local Examinations Paper (1998) for Further Mathematics. Other presenters were addressing the TI, Casio and Sharp equivalents to the HP38G.

2000: I presented sessions on using the HP38G for a local distributor, Bookland, and for the Mathematics Association of Western Australia.

2000: At the invitation of Hewlett Packard, I again presented on teaching with graphical calculators and the new HP30S at the NCTM Annual Conference in Chicago. This involved 'lessons' regularly presented at the Hewlett Packard sponsor's booth in the Exhibitor's Hall to attendees which demonstrated the useful features of the calculators.

2000: As part of a contract with Hewlett Packard I inaugurated the HP Teacher Support Group, organising presenters for the first three meetings. This is a meeting for teachers in the Perth North Metro area who use HP graphical calculators. Meetings are held four times per year and continue to the present day. I have presented at most of these meetings.

2000: I attended the AAMT National Graphics Calculator conference which was held in Sydney. This conference was designed to bring together innovators in educational use of graphical calculators. I was asked to present on the implications for assessment of the introduction of graphical calculators. I was one of a dozen or so who presented in these "Master Classes".

2000: I gave a guest lecture on behalf of Hewlett Packard for the Dip. Ed. students at Macquarie University in Melbourne. I was asked to cover the use of statistics (descriptive and inferential) and the use of probes with the Firmware datalogger.

2000: I attended the Mathematics 2000 Festival (a national mathematics teachers's conference), presenting a session on "Trig Graphs on a Graphical Calculator: Investigating Squine, Cosquine and Other Strange Functions".

1999: I was invited by Hewlett Packard to be one of the presenters on a Training Video for Teachers using the HP38G. Filming took place at my school in mid 1999.

1998: I presented professional development sessions for the Mathematics Association of Western Australia for schools in the north metropolitan area at Methodist Ladies College on "Tips and Tricks on the HP38G" and "Downloading Aplets for Teaching".

1998: At the invitation of Hewlett Packard, I presented on teaching with graphical calculators at the NCTM Annual Conference in Washington, D.C and also spent time in the Hewlett Packard sponsor's booth in the Exhibitor's Hall. This was the official launch of the HP38G (despite the calculator having been available for some time).

1997: I presented a number of sessions at Edith Cowan University on Programming the HP38G and on using the communications software to download and use teaching aplets from web sites such as mine.

1997: I presented at the AAMT Conference at R.M.I.T., Melbourne on the capabilities of the HP38G and on "Using the HP38G in teaching mathematics". My attendance was sponsored by Hewlett Packard.

1997: I presented on "Programming the HP38G" at the Mathematics Association of Western Australia annual State Conference in Bunbury.

1997: I presented on "Programming the HP38G" and on "Using the PLDL100 Datalogger with Probes" at the Science Teacher's Association of Western Australia annual State Conference at Muresk.

1995: I presented a session on "Making Your Own Bed: A Look at a set of Spreadsheets" on using spreadsheets to teach mathematical concepts at the Maths Association of WA State Conference in Bunbury.

1994: I presented a session on "Spreadsheets in an Archimedes Classroom" regarding the use of the spreadsheet application on the Archimedes computer to teach mathematical concepts. This session was repeated twice later in the year.

1993: I presented a session on mathematics software for the Archimedes computer at the Maths Association of WA State Conference in Bunbury.

1990: At the invitation of the Maths Association of W.A. I conducted professional development courses for teachers on new courses being introduced to schools. Topics covered included Network Theory, Solution of Equations Using Matrices and Geometric Transformations using Matrices.


Employment History

Current: St. Hilda's Anglican School for Girls (Mathematics Dept.)

Duties are currently teaching mathematics at lower school (ages 12 - 15) and upper school (ages 16 & 17) level. In addition to this I have been given the task of developing technological approaches to aid and simplify the teaching process.

Current:  Applications in Mathematics

Since 1989 I have been producing software and books under the business name of Applications in Mathematics. This is the business name under which I have contracted to Hewlett Packard on a number of occasions.

2000: Hewlett Packard, Calculator Division (Melbourne, Aust)

I was employed as an independent contractor for twelve months. Duties included participation in the development and testing of a number of new calculators, including the HP39G and HP40G graphical calculators and the HP30S scientific, the creation of a range of teacher support material and the provision of professional development on Hewlett Packard calculators both in Australia and overseas.

1988 - 1999: St. Hilda's Anglican School for Girls (Mathematics Dept.)

Duties were teaching mathematics in lower school (age 12 - 15) and upper school (age 16 & 17). I have taught in all courses of the mathematics curriculum of W.A. Duties also included programming, administration of and training in a computerised reporting system for the school, creation of a number of departmental web sites, and professional development of staff on a variety of computer skills.

Reason for leaving: To take the opportunity of working on the design of graphical calculators at Hewlett Packard in Melbourne.

1984 - 1987: Ministry of Education

Posted to Ocean Reef S.H.S. and to Collie S.H.S. teaching mathematics and computer studies. Duties also involved aiding in the initial setting up of the new Computer department at Ocean Reef SHS.

Reason for leaving: To take a position in the non-government sector.

1981 - 1982: Dennis Barton, Actuary

Duties as a part-time computer programmer involved the production of a form based computer application for use in the business.

Reason for leaving: University degree time requirements.

1978 - 1979: Bristile Ltd.

Routine quality control work and laboratory work.

Reason for leaving: To attend university.


Leisure Activities

bulletWorking with computers
bulletReading: I read extensively on computers to keep in touch professionally. I also have an extensive library (>1200 books) of science fiction and fantasy and I also like to try to keep in touch with research in Astrophysics via popular science books and magazines.
bulletMotorcycle riding

Last modified: 19 Dec 2007                                             Sitemap        Home        Contact Me