The LibreCalc is a scientific calculator that has it all: it’s open source, it runs Linux, and it’s 3D printed.
LibreCalc is the brainchild of French engineers Pierre Parent and Ael Gain. Their goal is to build from scratch a scientific calculator that is fully usable, with good ergonomics, and uses only free software and open hardware.
The LibreCalc will have all the scientific functionalities included on modern scientific calculators currently on the market, including a computer algebra system (CAS). A CAS allows computation of mathematical expressions in a way which is similar to the traditional manual computations.
As for the reasons for making a calculator, according to the two creators:
Calculators are sometimes the first tool young people use to learn programming. We donâ€™t want that their curiosity be discouraged because manufacturers close their products.
To design the casing, Pierre and Ael are using FreeCAD, a free and open source program which is quickly becoming the de facto standard for free hardware designers worldwide. They are also planning on selling the calculators, as well as kits and accessories, and are considering launching a crowdfunding campaign in the near future.
Although the calculator runs Linux and can be programmed in Python, it also emulates the TI-82 calculator, a machine originally made by Texas Instruments in the nineties. The TI-82 became one of the most popular graphing calculators of the time and is a reference for all later programmable graphic scientific calculators.
All electronic schematics, 3D files and software are distributed under free, open source licences and can be downloaded from the projects Download page.
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