The History of Elektro of Westinghouse

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8 Facts about Elektro of Westinghouse The Elektro was constructed from aluminum on a steel frame. It was 210 cm tall, weighing 120 kg. It was capable of performing 26 routines (movements), and a vocabulary of 700 words.Sentences were formulated by a series of 78 RPM record players connected to relay switches. Elektro had no […]

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The History of The Arabic Automata

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The Arabic Automata After the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the end of 5th century, the western and central part of Europe was swept down by many barbarian tribes and fall into so called Dark Ages for some five centuries. During this time, the centers of world’s art and science moved to the […]

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Suanpan abacus

Abacus Explained — Everything You Need To Know

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5 Facts About the Abacus The origin of the abacus is still debated. Similar counting frame objects are believed to have been used in ancient China and Babylon. An abacus is known as a Schoty in Russian and a Suanpan in Chinese. Modern abacuses are used to assist students with visual impairments. Using an abacus […]

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Gadgets

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In this section will be presented some simple calculating devices, which are not so clever, to be presented in other sections of the site, but still clever enough, to be interesting as principle or to had market success. During the second half of 19th and first half of 20th centuriy, a large number of relatively […]

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Calculating tools

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History of Computers and Computing, Calculating tools In this section will be examined some calculating tools, used by mankind in the past 2000 years. Of course we will start with the abacus, the most famous and of longest use calculating tool. Then will be examined two of the inventions of the Scottish nobleman John Napier—Napier’s […]

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Napier’s Bones Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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Facts about Napier’s Bones Napier’s Bones was one of several methods John Napier invented to simplify calculating large numbers. Napier’s Bones and other calculating techniques were published in 1617 in a book titled Rabdologiae, or speaking rods, shortly before Napier’s death. Napier’s Bones were in use for hundreds of years, until mechanical calculators were invented. […]

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Tachylemme of Chambon Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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3 Facts about Tachylemme of Chambon The Tachylemme was a specialized calculator, showing the daily interest on sums of money at various rates. The device was made of wood, paper, metal and glass, with measurements: 175 x 100 x 35 mm, and weighed 410 g. Tachylemme of Chambon could not do operations in huge numbers. […]

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Judah Levin's adding machine

Judah Levin Adding Machine Explained — Everything You Need To Know

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Judah Levin’s Adding Machine History Yehuda Leib Levin was born on March 26, 1863. He was the son of Nachum Pinchas and was born in Traby, Vilna Province, Russian Empire (now a small town in Belarus). Levin’s father died when he was eight years old and his uncle, rabbi Abraham Abramowitz, was an esteemed Talmud […]

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Landin's Computing Machine

Landin’s Computing Machine Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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3 Facts about Landin’s Computing Machine The Landin’s Computing Machine is a slide-chain adder with seven digital settings that you may manipulate with a pin or pencil. Landin’s Computing Machine is a well-designed and well-constructed gadget with a solid and sturdy build. It was invented in1890 by Peter J. Landin (Mar. 9, 1858–Jan. 24, 1940) […]

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Groesbeck

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Groesbeck’s Adding Machine John Groesbeck (1834-1884), was a consulting accountant, born in New York, who lived in Philadelphia and was many years (from 1858) a teacher and a principal of Crittenden’s Philadelphia Commercial College. He is also known as the author of several books, for instance The Crittenden Commercial Arithmetic and Business Manual, published for […]

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The Golden Gem Adding Machine

Golden Gem Adding Machine Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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3 Facts about Golden Gem Adding Machine Although specialized in addition, the machine can also subtract using a dedicated method. The Golden Gem Adding Machine was designed by Abraham Isaac Gancher but introduced in 1907 by the Automatic Adding Machine Co., New York. The machine was originally sold for $10 per unit. Golden Gem Adding […]

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Computometer

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History of Computers and Computing, Calculating tools, Gadgets, Computometer The Computometer of William George Cordingley The Englishman William George Cordingley, the author of several books for commerce and stock exchange from the end of 19th and beginning of 20th centuries, was a holder of 2 British patents—№GB190715435 from 24.10.1907 (see the lower patent drawing) and […]

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Centigraph Adding Machine

Centigraph Adding Machine Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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5 Facts about Centigraph Adding Machine The Centigraph is an adding machine that goes back to 1880. The inventor of the Centigraph Adding Machine was Arthur E. Shattuck. Arthur E. Shattuck got 1 Canada and 4 USA patents for calculating devices. Centigraph Adding Machine was 15.3 cm long, 20.6 cm wide, and 15 cm high. […]

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The Calcumeter, an ad from 1904

Calcumeter of James J. Walsh Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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When we picture calculators, we picture a device that almost resembles a cell phone or a TV remote: thin, tall, not very wide, and a series of useful keys and buttons to help users make every kind of calculation imaginable. It hasn’t always been this way, though. In the early days of the 20th century, […]

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Borland and Hoffmann adding machine

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History of Computers and Computing, Calculating tools, Gadgets, Borland and Hoffmann adding machine Borland and Hoffmann adding machine In 1878 William Patterson Borland, native of Baltimore, who lived in Leavenworth, Kansas, and Herman Hoffman, a watchmaker in Leavenworth, patented a one-column key adder (see US patent 205993), similar to the earlier Adder of Marshall Cram […]

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Bassett

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History of Computers and Computing, Calculating tools, Gadgets, Bassett Bassett Adder After disappearing from the market of Webb’s Ribbon Adder in the end of 19th century, another similar device appeared with much better market success. The so called Bassett Adder is another continuous band machine and was in production from 1909 till the end of […]

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BriCal

BriCal Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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3 Facts about BriCal The BriCal was invented to quickly calculate pre-decimal British currency up to £500. This popular British calculator came in many different configurations for different maximum results and currencies. There are 12 pence in a shilling and 20 shilling in a pound, which make quick currency calculations difficult without a BriCal. BriCal […]

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Arithmachine of Henry Goldman

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Arithmachine of Henry Goldman In Chicago, USA, in 1898 was published a very good book, panorama of existing adding machines — “THE ARITHMACHINIST. A Practical Self Instructor in Mechanical Arithmetic”. In its 158 pages the author—Henry Goldman, not only described the existing state-of-the-art in this area, examining many calculating devices, including these of Stephenson, Lightning, […]

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Adder

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History of Computers and Computing, Calculating tools, Gadgets, Adder The Adder of Arthur James Postans The British engineer Arthur James Postans (1867-1940) from South Kensington, London, applied for patent for an adding machine in 1902 in several countries. The British patent №GB190224868 (see the lower patent drawing) and the German patent were granted in 1904. […]

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Antikythera Mechanism – Complete History of the Antikythera Computer

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Antikythera Mechanism – Complete History of the Antikythera Computer Antikythera Mechanism Antikythera (literally "opposite Kythera", Kythera is the next bigger island) is a small Greek island lying on the edge of the Aegean Sea, between Crete and Peloponnese. In April 1900, group of Greek sponge divers, found a wreck of an ancient Roman galleon at […]

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Adix adding machine

Adix Adding Machine Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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Before becoming the rectangular, digital device we know them as today, the calculator took on many different mechanical forms during the early 20th century. Josef Benedikt Pallweber’s 1903 invention — the Adix adding machine — is one such example of this. Pallweber’s invention might look strange to us today from our modern perspective, but there’s […]

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Add-A-Mite Explained - Everything You Need To Know

Add-A-Mite Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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3 Facts About Add-A-Mite The design of Add-A-Mite is very similar to Webb Adder. This calculator is made from Aluminum, Iron, and Brass. This pocket calculator was manufactured by the company, Monogram of California Add-a-Mite History Far back into the past, written numbers used to be inexistent, with humans using only fingers and toes to […]

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Modern-day calculator

The History of Calculating Tools

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Since the dawn of time, the calculator has played an integral role in how the world functions. The calculation is key in regulating trade, determining the dimensions of land, and planning the construction of buildings, just to name a few essential uses. What’s more, early calculating devices eventually gave way to the first digital computers. […]

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Chinese South Pointing Chariot, model Lanchester (© Science Museum of London)

South-Pointing Chariot Explained – Everything You Need To Know

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While many of our most essential and frequently used devices were invented in the past couple of centuries and are continually improved to bring them to where they are today, some were conceptualized far earlier than just the 19th century. As a matter of fact, some — such as the earliest forms of what would […]

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