Adding Machine Calculator

Have you heard of William Seward Burroughs? No? Well you may be surprised to read that he is responsible for one of the biggest milestones than affected our modern day lives, the Adding Machine. Have you ever seen an adding machine? Some may remember adding machines, others may have only seen them in a museum as they are more recognized as an artefact now. That said, it is difficult to imagine banking as it is without the benefits delivered via the adding machine during the early 20th century. On this page you will find a simple adding machine calculator which illustrates how an adding machine works. Of course, iCalculator is packed with detailed, specific calculators that compute tax, math, physics and chemistry formulas within milliseconds so you are unlikely to need to use this adding machine but, we feel it is important to provide an adding machine so you have visability of this most basic of tools which paved the way for more modern calculators provided by iCalculator.

Adding machines were the invention that led to greater transparency in auditing, process and are the foundation of modern calculation instruments. These instruments and techniques have become so advanced that the world has almost forgotten about the primitive adding machine. In this article, we explore the wonderful history of the adding machine and, of course, provide an online adding machine for you to play with.

Adding Machine Calculator
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From Adding Machines To Modern Financial Tools: A Journey of Evolution

The first adding machine was first used in the United States of America to calculate basic dollars and cents. These machines were able to perform addition and subtractions directly and multiplication and division with repetitions. There were many ups and downs before any company started manufacturing it, but after trial and perseverance the adding machine proved to be a success. That initial success, with what is basically a simple calculator, sparked thought which in turn facilitated visions of a new approach to audit and control which in turn drove the development of the basic adding machine into more process specific tools. Let's see how adding machines were replaced over time by new instruments as calculation methods became easier to integrate and support specific process and activity.

The Invention of the Adding Machine

They say necessity is the mother of invention, but it was a bit different in the case of the adding machine, which was invented out of boredom. The first adding machine was invented by William Seward Burroughs during the early 1880s and was filed for patent in 1885. He was the son of a mechanic and had worked with different machines since his early childhood.

Burroughs grew up to be a bank clerk who was not happy at all with his job, especially because of those hefty manual calculations and long working hours. He quit his job due to bad health conditions and joined a machine shop. The fusion of knowledge of the long process/repetition involved in the clerical activity and his honed skills with machinery allowed him to conceive, develop and invent the adding machine.

This machine was the first of its kind, massively improving on manual tools which included arithmetic tools like the abacus and adders. With time, adding machines grew to include a full keyboard and were able to print the numbers and sums, becoming a key component of modern accounting and in common use in banks and businesses. These machines were used in most banks until the introduction of electronic calculators in the 1960s.

The First Hand Held Calculator

The very first calculator that could be held in one hand was invested by Curt Herzstark in 1945. This first hand held calculator was a mechanical calculator and its portability meant that activity could take place whilst on the move (on a train etc.). Although rlatively heavy and bulky compared to modern calculators, it was produced and consistently used until the lighter, more user friendly digital calculators, the first made by Japan, came into existence in 1970. As people becamce more familiar with the electronic calculators and the costs reduced, the demand for mechanical calculators faded away and they were replaced with advanced calculators as you know today.

The Catalyst: Electronic Calculator

Electronic calculators were first produced after the introduction of the transistor in the early 1950s. These early electronic calculators used to run on vacuum tube technology and were introduced in 1961. First calculator using integrated circuits appeared in mid 1960, which were then developed into even smaller circuits.

This development, born of improving technology was also the cause of shrinkage of the size of the basic calculators, led to the introduction of smaller calculators that were built with a small chip inside and were introduced in the early 1970s.

The Modern Day Calculator

Today, you don't need a physical calculator to do your arithmetical calculations. All you need is a smartphone or a computer to access a calculator. One of easiest calculators that is available is the Basic Online Calculator by iCalculator.

These basic calculators are capable of doing all the arithmetical calculations, but today online technology has made it possible for us to have a wide range of calculators for numerous formulas and processes required for professional and personal use.

Performing addition, multiplication, subtraction and division is made easier by these calculators. The basic arithmetic calculations are just a part of a very huge concept of mathematics.

The oldest known mathematical development after the basic arithmetic is believed to be the Pythagorean triples or the Pythagorean theorem as we know it. The Pythagoreans were also the people who came up with the term Mathematics.

You can find traces of Mathematics in almost all the ancient civilizations like, Egyptian, Babylonian, Greek, Indian, Chinese, Roman, Islamic Empire, Maya. Travelling through these civilizations the method of instructions crossed Medieval Europe and reached the Renaissance.

The 17th century was the time of the Scientific revolution and Mathematics grew with science together. It was time for Mathematics to spread globally, along with applied Mathematics. Several calculation methods evolved during the 18th and the 19th century.

Today, we have numerous calculation methods that are used for solving different kinds of problems or equations. In the absence of a quick and automatic calculator, using these metrics and comprehending the formulas can be challenging for many of us and some of us might not be able to do calculations simply due to the time taken to compute the functions. So, the bespoke online calculators provided by iCalculator, available online to perform calculations, are a blessing for many, providing an excellent practical resource and training aid for millions of people around the world.

Using Different Mathematical Calculators

In this day and age, there are various Mathematical calculators designed for your convenience. These calculators are capable of helping you with all kinds of mathematical calculations. Making use of these facilities not only saves time, but also makes the most complex calculations simpler. For example, you can use calculators for calculating 2D Shapes and 3D Shapes online and get precise answers to queries that may otherwise take a lot of your time and effort.

There are bundles of Mathematical calculators available online that are capable of performing the most complex calculations instantly. You can easily find an array of them online, pick and start using according to your needs. For example, if you want to convert several units such as, speed, time, density and energy, etc. there are online mathematical calculators such as The Conversion Calculators which make conversion easy for you. And, if you want to calculate things like the date and time difference, time addition and multiplication, etc. The Date and Time Calculators will help you do that in a jiffy.

Using the Fraction Calculators and Real Function Calculators can be helpful in solving numbers like numerator and denominator, however, fractions could be complex as well. The fractions can be converted into ratios, and by calculating the ratios, you can determine if they are equivalent to fractions. The Ratio Calculators contain a range of ratios that can be calculated.

The Matrix Calculators and Statistics Calculators are used quite commonly as well. You can solve the matrix and statistics problems using the spreadsheets, but it takes more time and effort. Using these online calculators can make them simpler.

The types of these mathematical calculations are endless and each calculation method is different and differently useful. Some of these calculations are listed below along with the links of the live calculators:

The advancement of adding machines may seem limited to these mathematical calculations, but it goes much beyond that. Finance industry runs and functions with all of these arithmetic and advanced mathematical metrics. Let's see how the adding machine was related to finance and what are the advanced metrics of calculations that are used in finance today.

The Adding Machines and Finance

As we discussed earlier, the adding machine was mainly used in banks but things changed with time and, along with all mathematical metrics and techniques, finance grew. This is because humans use finance to calculate money and calculating money is pretty important to us.

Just like Mathematics, finance has several branches, and you have used many of them whether you are aware of the separate financial disciplines or not. You might not even be aware that you are in touch with finance constantly. It could be a personal loan that you have borrowed, a mortgage on your house, filing your tax return every year and so much more.

Finance has everything to do with your day to day needs, want to know how? Let us show you some examples. Have you ever made a monthly budget for your household? Planned to invest in that new project in your company or have you been planning your retirement? If your answer to any of these questions is yes, then you are using finance.

The most commonly used function of finance is budgeting and that starts right from your home. You should aim to work out a monthly budget in order to run your finances smoothly. A household, a firm, a country, everyone needs budgeting to manage income, expenditure and save some money. The Budget Calculators - For households and Businesses provide you with calculators and guides on budgeting that are really useful for practical business and household needs.

The other important factor after budgeting is taking care of your responsibility towards your country by paying your taxes. Calculating your taxes can be a real chore, but not if you have the right knowledge about taxation in your country. The internet is a great source of knowledge, it can make your taxation even simpler when you use online tools like The Income Tax Calculators and Salary Calculators.

Calculating your salary with all the benefits that are taxable in your country should be done, if you want to save on your taxes. The Salary Calculators and Tax Calculators can help you with these calculations.

When you have enough savings and you are done with your taxes, wouldn't it be appropriate to invest that money? After all, if the saved money is kept without making it work for you, it will only lose its value as inflation impacts its relative worth. You can earn interest and grow your savings for your future.

However, investing your hard-earned money should be done with proper understanding and knowledge. It is always good to take professional advice and assistance when investing. However, you can do your own homework and improve your knowledge by comparing what is being offered in the market.

iCalculator provides free tools and guides to the financial market to help you calculate your potential return on investment (ROI) through Savings, investment and help you plan for your retirement by calculating your pension.

These financial calculations cane be used by both individuals and companies. Big firms generally have dedicated departments to manage their finances and accounts. However, small businesses do their own accounts and handle their own financial records.

If you are a small business and looking for some online instruments to help you with your calculations. You can use the The Accounting Calculators and Depreciation Calculators that are designed to help you make informed financial decisions.

Everyone needs help sometimes. Even if you are doing well financially, but do not own a house for example, a bit of backing from a mortgage can help your dream come true. We are talking about loans here. The definition of loan is very wide, it touches almost all parts of human life nowadays.

You can take a personal loan for urgent funding needs, a car loan to buy a car and pay for it in installments, a Payday Loan that you can settle by the time your next salary reaches your account, the list goes on. Credit cards, overdrafts and line of credits are all types of loans as well.

Mortgages in the modern times have become quite popular. Given their high value and long term, it is very crucial that you know your facts before you apply for one. The Mortgage guides and Mortgage Calculators are capable of guiding you through your time of need.

When it comes to paying interest to use this money, it becomes essential that you get the best deal possible. Today, when the internet can be used for almost anything, wouldn't it be best to take advantage of this blessing and learn about the loans before you borrow one.


The concepts of Mathematics, finances, accounting and auditing concepts have been with humans for thousands of years. Even though the existence of some financial instruments like the abacus can be traced back deep into history, the adding machine was the catalyst that underpinned a revolution, playing a big role in the evolution of the concepts and modern methods of calculations. What once could have taken weeks, now happens in seconds. Tools and processes that would have been costly and difficult to build into a process are now free and available online so we can use them wherever we are in the world. We owe the adding machine and William Seward Burroughs a sincere debt of gratitude.