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Monday, 7 November 2016

Figure That Out

When I took accounting in high school there was a gigantic adding machine on each desk.  There were several different models, some of them  ancient.  I remember one in particular; it was a Burrows.  The keys were so stiff you practically had to hammer them to make them move.  I got that desk more often than I cared for.
By grade twelve they introduced a brand new electric adding machine.  They were not yet calling them calculators.  We had ONE in our classroom.  (much like typing class where we had ONE electric typewriter)
These newfangled machines were so amazing that on parent/teacher night they had three of their best students doing a  demonstration for the parents.  They clustered around us, fascinated by the modern technology.  They were also in awe of our prowess with what looked like a terribly complicated piece of equipment.  By the end of the evening the poor machine was as "hot as a pistol" as the saying goes.  That was 1966.
By the time our daughter entered grade school in 1980 a "calculator" was on the list of required supplies.  Articles in the paper bemoaned the fact that our children were not learning to do math with paper and pencil and brainpower.
When I went back to work in 1987 I was given a calculator that was no larger than a credit card.  It had more functions than I would ever need.  By the time I left in 2009 there was no need for a calculator on your desk because there was one built into your computer.
On my desk at home now I have two calculators, another built into the computer and the laptop and an application on my phone for calculation.  I  have trouble doing any more than basic math using paper pen and brain power.  This COULD be age but I have a feeling it has more to do with not using the skills I was taught early in my education and relying too heavily on the calculator. 

11 comments:

  1. Can you remember long division? Which I am pretty certain would take my stiff brain an age to work out now.

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    1. I can remember and do long division but I always check with the calculator to ensure my answer is correct.

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  2. I still do a lot of math in my head or on paper with pen, I kept the skill alive because it was handy at the checkout and I add up mentally as I do my grocery shopping when I've only taken a certain amount of money with me.
    I know there is a calculator on my laptop, but I've never bothered to find it.
    Long division isn't so bad, but I do get the calculator off the shelf behind me to check the answer or just to do the problem easier.

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    1. I add as I go in the grocery store too.....doesn't help when the hubs keeps asking me questions as we go along lol.

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  3. I had a calculator at the old house, but I left it. Now I use my desk pad if I have to write down a problem to figure it out.

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    1. Ah, but you work with numbers on a regular basis don't you? I admire your ability.

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  4. My handwriting is embarrassing, it was never very good, but with a computer I seldom write and my "longhand" is a mess.

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    1. lol...I start out beautifully but very shortly my fingers find they can't keep up with my brain and the writing becomes a trail of chicken scratches in the dust. I often fin I can't read my own writing.

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  5. Bonnie weighs eighty plus pounds. She could be a small pony.

    Have a blessed week.

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  6. I remember those days! Calculators took the place of adding & subtracting. A sad turn of events.

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  7. Over the years technology is taking over ... and not always for the best.

    I still like to work things out in my head ...
    I still try to memorise peoples telephone numbers ...
    I still enjoy hand writing letters ...

    Guess you could call me old fashioned!

    All the best Jan

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It's lovely to know someone else is out there. Please leave me a comment...pretty please.