Universal Data Machine TKB 0001 Handheld Electronic Calculator

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Description
This handheld electronic calculator has a cream-colored case and an array of eighteen "Klixon" keys. Such keys have a design trademarked by Texas Instruments and make a distinctive click when pressed. In addition to ten digit and one decimal point key, the calculator has four keys for arithmetic functions. One serves as a total key for addition and another as a difference key for subtraction. The top of the keyboard has a constant switch, a D key for recalling the display (it turns off after several seconds), a clear entry key, and a red clear key. The eight-digit red LED display is behind the keyboard. An on/off switch and a socket for a cord for recharging the battery are at the top back. This example has no cord.
The back has four plastic feet. A paper sticker there reads in part: ELECTRONIC CALCULATOR (/) MODEL TKB 0001 (/) SERIAL: A 05777 (/) VOLTS: 7.2V, DC (/) MFG. IN UNITED STATES BY (/) Universal Data Machine (/) Corporation (/) 4611 N. Ravenswood St. (/) Chicago, Ill. 60640.
This is one of the earliest commercial handheld electronic calculators manufactured in the United States.
Compare to the Bowmar 901B (1986.0988.129) and the Craig 4501 (1987.0435.25).
References:
Guy Ball and Bruce Flamm, The Complete Collector’s Guide to Pocket Calculators, Tustin, CA: Wilson/Barnett, 1997, p. 174. This source indicates that the calculator was advertised in late 1972 as selling for $99.95.
[Advertisement], Chicago Tribune, July 18, 1972, p. 13. This advertisement gives a regular price of $179.95 and a sale price of $149.95.
Location
Currently not on view
date made
ca 1972
maker
Universal Data Machine Corporation
place made
United States: Illinois, Chicago
Physical Description
plastic (case; keys; display cover material)
metal (circuitry; keyboard material)
paper (sticker material)
rubber (feet material)
Measurements
overall: 1 1/2 in x 3 in x 5 1/2 in; 3.81 cm x 7.62 cm x 13.97 cm
ID Number
1986.0988.078
catalog number
1986.0988.078
accession number
1986.0988
Credit Line
Gift of John B. Priser
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Handheld Electronic Calculators
Computers & Business Machines
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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