In about 1972 or so, I was taking an upper level statistics course at Ohio State University. It was the first class when I found out from our instructor that we were going to need to have our own calculators. I had never owned a calculator before of the electronic type (I had of course, had a slide rule). I was a poor college kid and I had to go out and buy my first calculator – it might have cost $199. I do know that it was clunky and it had FOUR functions, add, subtract, multiply and divide (some people might say that is only 2 functions – I don’t want to argue).
Fast forward to 2009. My twin daughters will be seniors this fall. Stephanie is doing a summer internship in Mexico at an archeological dig site. I understand she wants to do some astronomical computations (meaning stellar – not big). She called and asked me to send her calculator to her but when I looked for it I couldn’t find it. Taking the easy way out (because it is almost impossible for me to call her to ask for better directions) I stopped in to Radio Shack to see what they had in the way of calculators.
So I bought her a Radio Shack 65-115 Scientific Calculator with 10 Digit 2 Line Display 241 Built-in functions plus a slice on case to protect against scratches. For this masterpiece of technology I paid the paltry sum of $2.47! Unbelievable.