Hewlett Packard HP-16C Programmer's Calculator

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Sold between 1982 and 1989, this was HP's only calculator designed to be used by computer programmers, to help with debugging. It could display numbers in decimal, hexadecimal, octal, or binary. Numbers wider than the LCD display were displayed in a 'windowed' format, with the visible digits able to be shifted left and right.

The calculator was configurable to match the computer the user was currently working with. The word size could be set to anywhere from 1 to 64 bits, with maths being performed in either unsigned, ones-complement, or twos-complement format.

Floating point calculations could be performed, with two conversion algorithms to convert between the HP-16C floating point format and the (not yet standard) IEEE format.

As well as the 'standard' calculator functions, the HP-16C also provided some specialised features designed for computer users:

  • Shift functions: left and right, arithmetic and regular.
  • Rotate functions: by multiple positions in either direction, optionally through the carry bit.
  • Left justify the bits of a word.
  • Masking: Create masks to mask left or right N bits.
  • #B: returned number of bits set in a word.
  • Bitwise Logic: and, or, not, xor; also bit setting and testing.

Manufacturer: Hewlett Packard
Date: 1982

Other Systems Related To Hewlett Packard HP-16C Programmer's Calculator:

Item Manufacturer Date
Hewlett Packard HP-21 Hewlett Packard September 1975
Hewlett Packard HP-25 Hewlett Packard November 1975
Hewlett Packard HP-32E Calculator Hewlett Packard 1978

This exhibit has a reference ID of CH35320. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.


Hewlett Packard HP-16C Programmer's Calculator

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