I found this image of the “Computer Mathematician” in one of the catalogs I keep near my desk for inspirational browsing. This little gem in one of those toys that I encountered as a kid at someone else’s house. It has been stuck in my head ever since because of its wonderful computer-like form factor and snazzy red color. I do not remember being able to distinguish between education and “leisure” toys as a kid, especially when the toy was electronic. Had I owned the Computer Mathematician who knows what heights of math skill I could have climbed to in my youth? Addition? Subtraction? Multiplication????
Whole worlds would have opened up to me. Instead I was given a second-hand calculator by my sister and taught that 5318008 was the most hilarious number ever.