The adding machine.
Oh, it looks mid-century awesome, but in reading these brochures? That's about the only good thing about it! The brochures/instruction manuals are really what we're going to be talking about today, but first - a little history behind the product.
According to Wikipedia, the modern adding machine was first manufactured by Burroughs (which, coincidentally, is the company that put out that many of these brochures). The Wiki article was written by an Australian, hence the "A/pound" sign, but here are example instructions for a mid-20th century adding machine:
"Some "ten-key" machines had input of numbers as on a modern calculator -- 30.72 was input as "3", "0", "7", "2". These machines could subtract as well as add. Some could multiply and divide, although including these operations made the machine more complex. Those that could multiply, used a form of the old adding machine multiplication method. Using the previous example of multiplying A£34.72 by 102, the amount was keyed in, then the 2 key in the "multiplication" key column was pressed. The machine cycled twice, then tabulated the adding mechanism below the keyboard one column to the right. The number keys remained locked down on the keyboard. The user now pressed the multiplication "0" key which caused tabulation of the adding mechanism one more column to the right, but did not cycle the machine. Now the user pressed the multiplication "1" key. The machine cycled once. To see the total the user was required to press a "Total" key and the machine would print the result on a paper tape, release the locked down keys, reset the adding mechanism to zero and tabulate it back to its home position."
Got that? Me neither. In fact, I'll be honest - I didn't even read that paragraph in its entirety - I zoned out about halfway through. :D I worked in the finance department of our local newspaper for five years before I left to do my art full-time, and I would've failed miserably if this is what I had to work with.
Which brings me (finally!) to the brochures! Aren't they wonderful? They make operation of these machines look SO easy! I mean, if the office girl can use one, how hard can it be (sarcasm alert!!!)? By the way, these all came from the Paper Flea Market and they may have a few left, if you're interested!
And of course, I LOVE using them in my artwork! The bold colors, the striking graphics - they all work wonderfully for making a piece really POP. Thank goodness that's the only use these brochures have anymore!
|"Day at the Office" collage - available|