16 Facts About Pascal's calculator


Pascal's calculator is a mechanical calculator invented by Blaise Pascal in 1642.

FactSnippet No. 536,815

Pascal's calculator designed the machine to add and subtract two numbers directly and to perform multiplication and division through repeated addition or subtraction.

FactSnippet No. 536,816

Pascal's calculator was especially successful in the design of its carry mechanism, which adds 1 to 9 on one dial, and carries 1 to the next dial when the first dial changes from 9 to 0.

FactSnippet No. 536,817

Pascal's calculator's innovation made each digit independent of the state of the others, enabling multiple carries to rapidly cascade from one digit to another regardless of the machine's capacity.

FactSnippet No. 536,818

Pascal's calculator had been assisting his father, who worked as a tax commissioner, and sought to produce a device which could reduce some of his workload.

FactSnippet No. 536,819

Related searches

Blaise Pascal Samuel Leibniz

Since the gears of the Pascal's calculator rotated in only one direction, negative numbers could not be directly summed.

FactSnippet No. 536,820

Method of re-zeroing that Pascal chose, which propagates a carry right through the machine, is the most demanding task for a mechanical Pascal's calculator and proves, before each operation, that the machine is fully functional.

FactSnippet No. 536,821

Pascal's calculator hid the theory from artisans, instead promoting that they should simply remember what to do, not necessarily why they should do it, i e, until "practice has made the rules of theory so common that [the rules] have finally been reduced into art”.

FactSnippet No. 536,822

In contrast, Samuel Morland, one of Pascal's calculator contemporaries working on creating a calculating machine, likely succeeded because of his ability to manage good relations with his craftsmen.

FactSnippet No. 536,823

The great innovation in Pascal's calculator was that it was designed so that each input wheel is totally independent from all the others and carries are propagated in sequence.

FactSnippet No. 536,824

Pascal's calculator first tried to build a machine that could multiply automatically while sitting on top of the Pascaline, assuming that all the dials on Pascal's calculator could be operated at the same time.

FactSnippet No. 536,825

Pascal's calculator then devised a competing design, the Stepped Reckoner which was meant to perform additions, subtractions and multiplications automatically and division under operator control.

FactSnippet No. 536,826

Pascal's calculator's report was favorable except for the sequence in the carry.

FactSnippet No. 536,827

Leibniz had not succeeded in creating a Pascal's calculator that worked properly, but he had invented the Leibniz wheel, the principle of a two-motion mechanical Pascal's calculator.

FactSnippet No. 536,828

Pascal's calculator was the first to have cursors to inscribe the first operand and a movable carriage for results.

FactSnippet No. 536,829

Pascal's calculator was the most successful mechanical calculator developed in the 17th century for the addition and subtraction of large numbers.

FactSnippet No. 536,830