Why is a calculator a computer

Windows calculator can do more than you think!

Roland Freest

The Windows calculator has been an integral part of the operating system for decades. However, while in previous years it only allowed switching between a standard and a scientific view, Microsoft has expanded it in Windows 10 to include functions for converting units and currencies of all kinds and, most recently, also incorporated a diagram function.

EnlargeTip: In standard mode, the calculator ignores the dot-before-line rule.

The calculator's program file is called calc.exe. You can find it in the folder C: \ Windows \ System32. If you need the program frequently, it is best to put a shortcut on the desktop. Otherwise call the tool by entering

in the search field on the taskbar and then click on the hit "Computer". The tool opens in the "Standard" view. If it should be permanently visible, for example because you need it when working in a program, you can keep it permanently in the foreground using the button to the right of "Standard". The calculator masters the four basic arithmetic operations, percentages and the hyperbolic function 1 / x, it can increase to the power of 2 and take the square root. The current calculations are saved in the history, via which you can repeat them with a click of the mouse. A click on the recycle bin at the bottom right clears the history. Further functions include a memory that you fill with the “MS” button and then add or subtract with “M +” and “M-”, call up with “MR” and delete with “MC”, as well as the “C” (Clear ) to delete the entire calculation and "CE" (Clear Entry) to delete the last entered value. Alternatively, you can also press the [Esc] and [Del] keys. An alternative to "CE" and [Del] is the backspace button or the corresponding key on your keyboard.

Danger: The standard calculator does not take the dot-before-line rule into account, but simply works through equations from left to right. In order for it to take the rule into account, you must switch to the scientific calculator. You can do this via the “menu icon -› Scientific ”. In this mode, the calculator offers you additional mathematical functions.
Other modes of the calculator include a diagram display, functions for programmers such as the conversion of decimal and hexadecimal or binary codes and a date calculation that tells you the number of days between two dates or adds a definable number of days to a specified date. In addition to the menu, you can also use the key combinations Alt-1, Alt-2, etc. to switch between the five modes.

The “Diagram” mode, which was added a few months ago, is particularly interesting. Microsoft developed it primarily for use in schools, so there is also a function for sharing a diagram with others: Call up diagram mode using the button at the top right. A small toolbar with three buttons will appear there. After clicking on the middle icon, you can send the diagram using the Windows Mail app.

To enter a new function, switch to the input window for equations using the switch at the top right. For example, type in “x + 3”, switch to the diagram display and look at the result.

EnlargeThe volume converter can help with cooking, because it gives the amount in milliliters for American quantities such as a spoon or cup.

In addition to the classic pocket calculator functions, the calculator also comes with 13 converters. They convert about horsepower into kilowatts, knots and miles into kilometers, Fahrenheit into Celsius or atmospheres into cash. The currency converter always calls up the current rates on the Internet, you can click on "Update prices" to change the exchange rates when using the program for a long time always bring it up to date. If you like to cook and try out American recipes, you should take a look at the volume converter: It converts American information such as tea or tablespoon ("spoon") and mug ("cup") into milliliters.

By the way:Microsoft placed the computer under an open source license in 2019. The Canadian company Uno then developed a version of the program for Android (Uno Calculator 1.2.3, free, for Android) and posted a version for the browser on the web at https://calculator.platform.uno.

Reading tip:More Top Windows Features You Didn't Know About

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