# Step Reckoner

Step Reckoner

a calculating machine designed (1671) and built (1673) by the German mathematician-philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm). The Step Reckoner expanded on the French mathematician-philosopher Blaise Pascal (Pascal, Blaise)'s ideas and did multiplication by repeated addition and shifting.

Leibniz was a strong advocate of the binary system. Binary numbers (binary number system) are ideal for machines because they require only two digits, which can easily be represented by the on and off states of a switch. When computers became electronic, the binary system was particularly appropriate because an electrical circuit is either on or off. This meant that on could represent true, off could represent false, and the flow of current would directly represent the flow of logic.

Leibniz was prescient in seeing the appropriateness of the binary system in calculating machines, but his machine did not use it. Instead, the Step Reckoner represented numbers in decimal form, as positions on 10-position dials.

Paul A. Freiberger Michael R. Swaine

* * *

Universalium. 2010.

### Look at other dictionaries:

• Reckoner — Infobox Single Name = Reckoner Artist = Radiohead Album = In Rainbows A side = Released = 30 September 2008 Format = Download Recorded = Genre = Alternative rock Length = 4:50 Label = XL Recordings Writer = Radiohead Producer = Nigel Godrich,… …   Wikipedia

• Stepped Reckoner — La Stepped Reckoner. En los años 1670, el barón alemán Gottfried Leibniz llevó el cálculo mecánico un paso más adelante de sus predecesores. Leibniz, quien entró en la universidad a los quince años de edad y recibió su licenciatura a los… …   Wikipedia Español

• Stepped Reckoner — The Liebniz Stepped Drum (or Step(ped) Reckoner, a translation of its German name Staffelwalze,) was a digital mechanical calculator invented by German mathematician and philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz around 1672 and completed 1694.cite… …   Wikipedia

• computer — computerlike, adj. /keuhm pyooh teuhr/, n. 1. Also called processor. an electronic device designed to accept data, perform prescribed mathematical and logical operations at high speed, and display the results of these operations. Cf. analog… …   Universalium

• Difference Engine — ▪ calculating machine       an early calculating machine, verging on being the first computer, designed and partially built during the 1820s and 30s by Charles Babbage (Babbage, Charles). Babbage was an English mathematician and inventor; he… …   Universalium

• Arithmometer — ▪ calculating machine       early calculating machine, built in 1820 by Charles Xavier Thomas de Colmar of France. Whereas earlier calculating machines, such as Blaise Pascal (Pascal, Blaise) s Pascaline in France and Gottfried Wilhelm von… …   Universalium

• In Rainbows — Studioalbum von Radiohead Veröffentlichung 2007 Label XL Recordings Format …   Deutsch Wikipedia