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Old Apr 29, 2004, 5:01 AM   #1
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Default Close Up: Wooden computing power

For those among us with some knowledge of the history of math they will appreciate this image. This one shows one of the oldest computing devices. The stark abstractness of the image gives almost no evidence of its computing power.

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Old Apr 29, 2004, 8:46 AM   #2
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An abacus in the abstract, which is so very, very fitting. After all, math is an abstract discipline. Either you arranged the beads "just so" or the abacus knew how to arrange itself for a good portrait. Nice one, Selvin.
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Old Apr 29, 2004, 7:37 PM   #3
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Default Abacus

Perhaps calculator is a better term for an abacus. Regardless, you created an interesting design.

Well done.

rod
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Old Apr 29, 2004, 7:55 PM   #4
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:P :lol: Druidic computing :P :lol:
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 1:59 AM   #5
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Thanks for your kind comments.

Rod, yes calculator would be a more accurate term.

Cheers.
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 10:08 AM   #6
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Rod, "to compute" means to "calculate." The world of electronics has absconded with the word, but it still means to determine via calculation, usually mathematically.

I'm an annoying word freak. Feel free to ignore me.
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 10:16 AM   #7
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What fabulous colors (or lack of)! Nice and smooth, these beads, and nice shadows. It's a very restful photograph, to me.
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 11:46 AM   #8
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Barbara,

The 20th century did abscond with the word and have added the concept of stored instructions to differentiate calculators from computers.

It's ironic and your point is well taken that what some hand calculators are now capable of (even basic 5-function ones) would probably have been considered computing back in the dawn of the age of computers.
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 1:45 PM   #9
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And before that computer dawn, they would have been seen as magical. I still think of electricity as a magic trick.
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Old Apr 30, 2004, 3:38 PM   #10
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My sister and I used to imagine the apoplexy Laura Ingalls would have had, had she met Orson Welles and hopped into his machine to end up here.
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