Calculating minds

Posted on miércoles, abril 27, 2011 by Pedro Wave


Traducción al español aquí

If anything distinguishes humans from animals is our calculating mind that allows us to solve problems of all kinds, including mathematical problems, such as John von Neumann, the father of computing architecture, so easily solved using the same neurons to store both instructions and data, or is not that what the mind is doing?


History of calculators

Thanks to software and electronic calculators we have progressed greatly since that the first desktop calculator was released exactly 50 years ago, in October 1961,  called ANITA (A New Inspiration To Arithmetic / Accounting) .

Today I present the first Excel calculator that lets you change the size and distribution of keys and allows to store each virtual keyboard on a spreadsheet.



Touch calculator with floating keys

This calculator is tactile whenever you have a touchscreen and keys are floating because with the right mouse button you can drag and drop them where you wants, in addition to changing its size or rotate them (the latter feature is not saved.) You can download it by clicking the following link:

CalculadoraTactilPW2.xls


Once you set the keys to your liking you can save a custom layout of the virtual keyboard by pressing the Record button, keeping the keyboard layout on a new Teclasn sheet (maximum of n is 100). The calculator comes preconfigured with 4 virtual keyboards plus first help calculator.

Using Excel's zoom you can zoom in or out the calculator.

With a screen resolution of 1280 by 1024 pixels and a zoom of 40% is obtained about the size of the Windows calculator that I have copied its keyboard shortcuts as are available on this page:

Calculator: frequently asked questions

The columns in the Teclado sheet relate the virtual keyboard with the physical keyboard that can be used interchangeably:
A - Name
B - Button
C - Key
D - Code
E - Procedure

For this I used extensively OnKey method, even with the numeric keypad that is activated by pressing Num Lock.

OnKey Method [Excel 2003 VBA Language Reference]

What I can't do is what makes the Windows calculator when you press the right mouse button on a key it goes What is this? with the equivalent key on the keyboard. So Tooltips are used to display its equivalent keys when move the cursor over a button in the shape of the key.

Send me a message if you find a bug or errata to improve the calculator.


Roman calculator

What I have not done is a calculator with Roman numerals, but my friends of Cesaraugusta have designed a ROMAN CALCULATOR.

When you build roads, aqueducts or count your gladiators, this calculator will make the job easier for you.


Calculator games

The RSME or Spanish Royal Mathematical Society has a good page dedicated to the dissemination of mathematics and gives us a guessing game for which you need a calculator:
El día de Pi
Pi Day Magic


Web 2.0 calculators

If  you couldn't get enough of this Excel calculator, you might be interested in these calculators that can get you out of any trouble.




Google Calculator
Google Calculator Guide Quick Reference



Web 2.0 scientific calculator


This last is my favorite for its outstanding features and even speaks Spanish, English and German. In History you can see examples of what can be done as:

0.2^(1-sqrt(2.5))/sqrt3(125^2-0.3^3)-cos(pi/sqrt(5))^(2e3*pi/e^2)

1/2*9.81m/s^2*(1563ms)^2

x^2+3x-9=0

The user can solve equations and see the result in GUI mode.
Do not try it with my Excel calculator!

Remap the Keyboard in Windows XP
Remap Num Lock Key


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