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Hewell-Packard Introduces the HP 9100A, the First Marketed, Mass-Produced Programmable Calculator, or Personal Computer

HP9100A programmable calculator

The new Hewlett-Packard 9100A personal computer" is "ready, willing, and able... to relieve you of waiting to get on the big computer."[1][2]

In 1968 Hewlett Packard, Palo Alto, California, introduced the programmable desk calculator, the HP 9100A.

"HP called it a desktop calculator, because, as Bill Hewlett said, 'If we had called it a computer, it would have been rejected by our customers' computer gurus because it didn't look like an IBM. We therefore decided to call it a calculator, and all such nonsense disappeared.' An engineering triumph at the time, the logic circuit was produced without any integrated circuits; the assembly of the CPU having been entirely executed in discrete components. With CRT display, magnetic-card storage, and printer, the price was around $5000. The machine's keyboard was a cross between that of a scientific calculator and an adding machine. There was no alphabetic keyboard" (Wikipedia article on Hewlett-Packard, accessed 03-10-2010).

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