Gottfried Wilhelm Von Leibniz (1646-1716), co-inventor of calculus once said: "For it is unworthy of excellent men to lose hours like slaves in the labour of calculation which would safely be relegated to anyone else if machines were used."
And between 1672 and 1674, he designed and built a machine that could add, subtract, multiply, and divide. This machine, which he called the "Stepped Reckoner" and which today we call a "Leibniz Wheel," is a precursor to our modern computers. As we study calculus, we will see that calculators or computers play an important role in carrying out calculus calculations, especially if we want to get answers to real-world problems.
One of the nice features of Calculus on Demand is that we have developed a series of small computing tools called applets that allow us to do many of these calculations and also to visualize calculus concepts. We will be using applets regularly as we go through our lessons.
Thus, starting with Leibniz, the tradition of using computers in the study and application of calculus continues down to today.
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