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Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
03-24-2020, 05:27 PM (This post was last modified: 03-24-2020 05:28 PM by Maximilian Hohmann.)
Post: #1
Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
Hello!

Recently I acquired a "lot" of calculators, which also included a (boxed! and seemingly unused) "National Semiconductor Model 600 Personal Calculator". Made in USA in 1973 or 1974.

I think this must be the most minimalistic calculator in my collection. Six digits, integer arithmetic, no key for a decimal point. The "+" key performs the (unlabeled) Enter function as in similar units. The little "decimal" switch on top of the keyboars is really a gimmmick because it only turns on and off a fixed decimal point LED between the second and third digit from the right.

Does anybody have an even simpler (RPN) calculator?

Regards
Max

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03-24-2020, 08:07 PM
Post: #2
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
(03-24-2020 05:27 PM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  Hello!

Recently I acquired a "lot" of calculators, which also included a (boxed! and seemingly unused) "National Semiconductor Model 600 Personal Calculator". Made in USA in 1973 or 1974.

I think this must be the most minimalistic calculator in my collection. Six digits, integer arithmetic, no key for a decimal point. The "+" key performs the (unlabeled) Enter function as in similar units. The little "decimal" switch on top of the keyboars is really a gimmmick because it only turns on and off a fixed decimal point LED between the second and third digit from the right.

Does anybody have an even simpler (RPN) calculator?

Regards
Max

Wow! that is minimal! Integer only - so if you press 1, +, 3, ÷ you get 0?

Tom L
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03-24-2020, 08:34 PM
Post: #3
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
Hello!

(03-24-2020 08:07 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  Wow! that is minimal! Integer only - so if you press 1, +, 3, ÷ you get 0?

Yes, just tried it out. And if the "decimal" switch is turned on, you get "____._0" as result istead :-) I wonder why anybody would want to use such a device, even in 1973.

Regards
Max
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03-24-2020, 10:44 PM
Post: #4
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
(03-24-2020 08:34 PM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  Hello!
(03-24-2020 08:07 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  Wow! that is minimal! Integer only - so if you press 1, +, 3, ÷ you get 0?
Yes, just tried it out. And if the "decimal" switch is turned on, you get "____._0" as result istead :-) I wonder why anybody would want to use such a device, even in 1973.
Regards
Max

Why? Price. With all of these cost saving measures, this must have been one of the cheaper models available at the time. I saw listings where it was advertised at US$24.99 in April 1974 and was on sale for $14.99 by November. And if you only needed it for balancing your checkbook or very basic math, it would work for that.

I remember looking at limited models like this around 1973-1974 as I was trying to convince my mother that me buying an electronic calculator would not ruin my ability to do math with pencil and paper. Those were dark ages indeed.

Here is more information on this model including the "manual".
https://www.keesvandersanden.nl/calculators/ns600.php
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03-25-2020, 05:04 PM
Post: #5
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
The Commodore Minuteman 6X has the same features. The 'Enter' key has the same functionality as the '+=" key.

   

Check out NQ41!
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03-25-2020, 07:24 PM
Post: #6
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
I think we have a winner.
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03-26-2020, 10:06 AM
Post: #7
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
(03-25-2020 07:24 PM)Eddie W. Shore Wrote:  I think we have a winner.

The Commodore hsa one key more :-)
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03-26-2020, 12:21 PM
Post: #8
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
(03-26-2020 10:06 AM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  
(03-25-2020 07:24 PM)Eddie W. Shore Wrote:  I think we have a winner.

The Commodore hsa one key more :-)

Who would have guessed an ENTER key would be considered a frilly, unnecessary key on an RPN calculator?

--Bob Prosperi
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03-26-2020, 01:27 PM
Post: #9
RE: Most minimalistic (RPN) calculator
(03-26-2020 12:21 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  
(03-26-2020 10:06 AM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  The Commodore hsa one key more :-)

Who would have guessed an ENTER key would be considered a frilly, unnecessary key on an RPN calculator?

You just have to clear the calculator and press + after the first entry. After all, it only has a two-level stack! I wouldn't want to use it now but it was a help back in the day, I'm sure. I don't know about the utility of a divide key on an integer-only calculator, though.

Tom L
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