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Who Invented Calculator?

What if we had to do the large digit calculations by ourselves and also without an error? Have you ever wondered how long it takes us to do what people used to do in very old times? But that process of calculating large number digits was so hectic and time-consuming.

When you're solving mathematics problems, what is the most important device which you'll use? It is like an assistant who follows your command within a fraction of seconds.

If you want to see something miraculous illustration of science and technology, then no other better option than the calculator. Calculator is the thing that you can easily grab in your one palm.

This small and simple calculator can do millions of calculations in just a fraction of seconds. Today we are going to discuss the entire evolution of the calculator. Now the calculator has been modified by human beings and you can compute equations on your smart watches or smart phones.

The Evaluation of Calculator

Such a great revolution in the history of mathematics is not a matter of a single human mind or a one-night miracle. Surely many great and innovative minds and many nights of hard work must have been behind it. So let's discuss all these changes one by one:

The Abacus: a revolutionary start

This is the very first and ancient method of calculation. The first invention which had been done to make terrible calculations easier and faster was an Abacus. It was firstly used in Egypt around 2000 BC. This human invention was no less than magic which has been possible because of the tireless efforts of the people.

This tool made the additions and subtractions faster and the most important part was; it has fewer errors. It has been used for a very long time in history. For the next 3600 years, people have used Abacus.

But here we can say that the Abacus was not a device, it was a tool or process used for counting. An Abacus was made up of sticks and small ball-shaped beads. These beads were slid on the sticks. All the sticks were attached to the rectangular wooden frame.

At present, many countries like Japan, China, and India still use the abacus. This ancient way of calculations.

Schickard Calculator

Later on, in 1623, a German Biographer William Schickard is the one who invented Schickard Calculator. Along with addition and subtraction, this calculator could also calculate multiplication and division.

It was known as Mechanical Four Function Calculator. It was the next version of the abacus.


When human intelligence grew broader, then they start to develop more advanced calculators which are faster and more errorless than the previous one.

In 1642, a French Mathematician and Physicist, Blaise Pascal invented mechanical calculators. Those calculators were also known as Pascaline.

It was used to perform addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division but still, that was the basic form of the calculator. This calculator made calculations faster and more precise.

Leibniz Calculator or Step Reckoner

Leibniz's calculator was invented in 1671, by a German Mathematician and Philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz. This calculator was also known as the StepReckoner. It was the advanced form of calculator which worked on Pascal's ideas.

It could do be able to calculate multiplication by repeating additional methods and shifting too.

The Troncets or Slide Adders

It was another time of great revolution in history. Now it was time to move from big and heavy machines to small and handhold calculating devices.

Because it was not possible to carry such heavy and huge calculating machines. So again designed faster, more accurate, and most importantly reducing the size was a challenge for inventors.

The slide adders were designed by Abaque Rhabdologique. He was a Parisian Doctor.

Slide Adders were pocket-sized calculators. At that time, the calculator could be used everywhere because of its pocket-friendly size.

Industrial Revolution

That was the time of the massive industrial revolution when with their innovative ideas inventors have modified the design, size, and performance of calculators.

Arithmometer was the first successful calculating machine that was developed in 1820. It was another example of a more accurate and modern design than the previous machines.

Burroughs Adding Machine

Burroughs got the patent for his calculating device in 1888. It was designed by an American Arithometer Co.

It was proved an inaccurate calculating machine. Later on, after more research, Burroughs received another patent for an improved calculating device in 1893.

Push Buttons

In earlier technology, either the calculators have beads or any handle to rotate or a sliding disk.

In the late 18th century and early 19th century, all the inventors were focusing on the design part of the calculator. They were trying to simplify it. So in 1902, the new technology was invented in a calculator. The mathematicians installed the push-button technology in the calculators.

These pushbuttons are still found in the mechanical calculator. That technology was a huge step in the direction of simplifying the machine.

Dalton Adding Machine

After the invention of pushbuttons, Dalton Adding Machine was the first calculator having ten keys. It was invented by James L. Dalton in 1902.

It was the most popular 10 key adders of that time. Many other calculator models had inspired by the design of Dalton's Machine.

The Victor Adding Machine Co.

It was the company that designed calculators or adding machines. Victor Adding Machine Co. was started in 1918. It was established in Chicago. Oliver David Johantgen, the chief designer and other three owners.

It was designed for mainly shopkeepers and business owners. There was a reel of paper fixed in the machine. It means this calculating machine was printable.

Mechanical Calculator

The mechanical calculator was invented in the mid-nineteenth century by Thomas de Colmar.

But the main concern was; such calculators were extremely bulky and large.

The Curta Calculator

After such a large calculator, it was time to introduced something new, the first Pocket Calculator.

It was designed by Curt Herzstark in 1943. This calculator was a handheld machine that was known for its immense compact design.

The Curta calculator was a small cylindrical-shaped machine that can easily fit in the palm of your hand. At that time, it was a very useful tool for accountants and engineers.


ENIAC is the abbreviated form of Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer. It was invented on February 15, 1946, at the University of Pennsylvania.

It was known by the name of 'GiantBrain'. ENIAC was the first programmable, electronic, large-scale, general-purpose, and digital computer. It was capable of solving huge and complicated problems in a fraction of seconds.

It could perform basic arithmetic operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. It was 1000 times faster than the earlier electronic mechanical calculators.

In electronic calculators, the operation performs with the help of electronic signals. These signals are transmitted between the sender and the receiver.

The First All-Electronic Desktop Calculator, ANITA

It was the first calculator which was all electronic. It means all the parts and processes of the calculator were electronic except the push button keys (which were mechanical only).

It was invented in 1961. ANITA was developed by the company control System Ltd. In Britain which was led by Norbert Kitz.

ANITA stands for a new Inspiration to Arithmetic or A New Inspiration To Accounting. Its name was exactly matched with its features. It was truly a new inspiration and innovation.

The First Graphic Calculator, Casio

In 1985, Casio developed the world's first graphic calculator. These graphics were still used in today's calculators.

In 1970, the microprocessor was invented. So this calculator is neither mechanical nor electronic. It consists microprocessor chip. The memory was too little which was less than half kilobytes (0.5 KB).

These calculators are able to perform all the arithmetic operations with accuracy, however also it was able to perform 82 various and complicated scientific functions.

It has an enlarged, black and white display. These calculators were most popular and used in several fields. It was used by engineers, accountants, shopkeepers, students, etc.

Calculator in Cell Phones

Now, it was time to replace a calculator. There was no need to have a separate calculator anymore in the pocket.

First time in 1993, the calculator was introduced in cell phones. It was developed by IBM Simon. Now just like other features; calendar, clock, etc, calculator had been also one of the most essential features of cell phones.

It was too convenient that used by everyone and everywhere. This step of innovation made calculators widely accessible and available for everyone to use.

Today's Advanced Calculators

After the calculators had been entered in the cell phones, in the mid-2000s, many modern and smart phones were introduced, calculator. Now calculators are widely accessible in every smart phone, tablet, and app store.

Today's calculators are the most advanced. It can perform arithmetic, logic, exponential, trigonometric and so many other scientific functions.

Graphic, colored and touchable display in calculators is very common now.


There is no point in the debate that the calculator is the most precious invention in human history. It has made the calculations very fast and accurate. Today we can do very large digit calculations very easily with the help of a calculator.

Behind this great success and innovation is not the intelligence of any one person, however, the innovation of the calculator machine is the result of many intellectuals.

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