Friday, 12 August 2016

Answer to our Maths Week Post?

Can you guess what this is??

What would you use it for and how would it work??

How old do you think it could be??


A calculator:

It was a calculator created by mathematician Blaise Pascal in 1642 who invented a machine that could do math,  it was a big clunky box, and instead of buttons it had circle-shape dials.
To add two numbers, you "dialed" the first number, then the second number. A little window above the dials showed you the "sum," the answer you get when you add.

To add really big numbers, you used a new dial for each digit.

So for 352 you would dial a 3 on the first wheel, a 5 on the second wheel and a 2 on the third.
It took almost as long as doing the math itself! But thanks to Pascal's cool gadget, we now have speedy electronic calculators today.

Additional Questions if interested:

Junior: If it takes only 2 seconds to add numbers on a cellphone, but 5 seconds longer on Pascal's machine, how many seconds did his machine take?  
Bonus: How many ways can you group your fingers into 2 groups that add up to 10 (with at least 1 finger in each group)?
Middle/Senior School: If there are 5 wheels and each wheel has 10 digits, how many digits do the dials show?  
Bonus: Pascal was born in 1623, and invented the mechanical calculator in 1642. How old was he when he invented it?
Senior plus: If each dial can show the numbers 0 to 9 how many different 3-digit numbers can the first 3 dials show?

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