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# Calculator and Phone...?

tempdbs
If you compare a calculator and a phone ---

Why are the numbers on a calculator and a phone reversed?

Aless

Weird!

Maybe has something to do with ergonomics?
Davidgr1200
Well, how else would you distinguish between a calculator and a phone these days?
BugBear
That is kind of weird, never thougth about it. This is what I found via google :

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/tech/Geek/geek001109.html
 Quote: The real answer seems to lie in a study conducted at Bell Labs titled Human Factor Engineering Studies of the Design and Use of Pushbutton Telephone Sets. Published in the July 1960 issue of the Bell System Technical Journal, the report says that researchers tested a number different layouts including the three-by-three matrix with the zero at the bottom; versions with two rows of five numbers, arrayed either horizontally or vertically; and circular configurations with numbers laid out in clockwise and counterclockwise fashion. The study concluded that the three-by-three version with 1-2-3 in the top row was the easiest for people to master. There was another reason as well. When it came time to match letters of the alphabet up with the numbers, putting 1-2-3 across the top made a lot more sense because it was the most natural way to get ABC in the top row. If 7-8-9 had been at the top, one of two things would have happened  the letters and the numbers would have run in opposite directions, or PRS would have been the first set of letters. Either arrangement would have seemed very odd, indeed.
tempdbs
 BugBear wrote: http://abcnews.go.com/sections/tech/Geek/geek001109.html

alexdude
How do you guys come up with these things?
wylieconlon
In my opinion, the calculator layout simply makes sense. Some numbers are used more than others no doubt, and I personally use 0's much more than I use 9's. You're also holding the calculator from the bottom, which would let you access those numbers more easily.
ashish2005
I had this is mind since a long time back. Why are the numbers on a calculator and on a phone are reversed? The numpad keys of a computer is also opposite of the telephone numbers. It would have been so easy if the layout of the keys in all these devices were same. It's really hard when I try to use the calculator on my cell phone.
imagefree
 wylieconlon wrote: In my opinion, the calculator layout simply makes sense. Some numbers are used more than others no doubt, and I personally use 0's much more than I use 9's. You're also holding the calculator from the bottom, which would let you access those numbers more easily.

I agree. Once i read some material on this but at that time i was not interested in that so i dont remember what was the conclusion.

But i think that its designed considering the nature of human and the use of numbers.

In calculator we need 0 more than any other number while in phone all the numbers have equal probability.

(its just my thinking, not a research )
I dont know what was in the minds of the inventros.
BrookfieldPC
Honestly, I think the phone layout is the most reasonable. I think the keypad layout (or calculator layout) is easy to use, but that's only because I've been so accustomed to using it. If I would have had to use a keypad with a phone number-layout, I think I'd still be able to input numbers just as fast, because I'd be use to the new style. It really doesn't matter if you ask me.
william
There are a lot of random things that come to my mind, and I can't stop thinking about them for long periods of time. One of these things was exactly this, why are the numbers arranged differently on a phone and a calculator. The calculator seemed to make sense immediately because, as mentioned by another user, it's easier to reach the numbers, and they were a convenience. As for phones, it was just that letters go A, B, C, D, etc. thus numbers should go up. If phones didn't have letters on them, I would prefer the calculator layout over the phone layout as it's more comfortable for me.
missdixy
 Davidgr1200 wrote: Well, how else would you distinguish between a calculator and a phone these days?

Lol. Good point
tempdbs
 alexdude wrote: How do you guys come up with these things?

Dear Alex,
There are so many things like this if you go on thinking....
It's a drop from the ocean....

So think a little bit to atleast share some opinions on these???
ftv_flung
Thanks for that BugBear - I found that really interesting
xkobram
What is a difference between cellphone and calculator? isnt it same thing?
pll
Lol, I don't know why but ... WHAT A GOOD QUESTION !
xkobram Nice answer! No but seriously, I have no idea why!
I never thought about it before!
Kaisonic
The main reason probably is text messaging and other letter-related touch-tone things. Like that article says, having 1-2-3 on the top of the keypad allows the alphabet to be in order (ABC on the top and XYZ on the bottom). But with a calculator, the use of letters is in no way related to numbers, so it makes more sense to have 1-2-3 on the bottom, next to where the enter and equals button(s) are.
Genesiz
Just my thoughts here but written english goes from left to right and down the page. This is how the numbers at the top of a keyboard are written. Now placing these numbers on a phone means that 1 will go first, and the rest will come after. The numbers are written in a 3x3 grid with 0 at the bottom because of space (you trying fitting all 10 numbers in one row. It ain't gonna happen).

My point here is that other languages use different written formats, and so maybe the 3x3 grid on a keyboard/calculator takes it format from a different language (any suggestions here would be helpful).

Note - the moblie phone that we know was developed by an American company, and so it stands to reason that the numbers/letters would follow an American format (left to right going down).
snowboardalliance
 Kaisonic wrote: The main reason probably is text messaging and other letter-related touch-tone things. Like that article says, having 1-2-3 on the top of the keypad allows the alphabet to be in order (ABC on the top and XYZ on the bottom). But with a calculator, the use of letters is in no way related to numbers, so it makes more sense to have 1-2-3 on the bottom, next to where the enter and equals button(s) are.

Yeah it seems that the phone is because of the letters and for some reason a calculator seems more natural the other way...or we're all just used to it being different.
Oh well, good observation there!

Hmmmm.. Just my opinion, I think just like other's posted, it will do something with ergonomics.

My idea is, on a numpad of a keyboard the keys 1, 2 and 3 are near to the enter key. On the other hand, keys 1, 2 and 3 on a keypad of a cellphone are near also to OK key. The anomaly is which the lowest's numbers should be near to a confirm key. I don't mean it's a right analysis, anyway it's only an idea, I might be wrong.
goutha
The answer is here : http://www.vcalc.net/Keyboard.htm
Donutey
On a keyboard it's a lot easier to touch type with the arrangement that they have 3x3+zero at the bottom, but then again it's probably because the size of the zero key more than any actual advantage.
liamthebof
I much prefer the phone keyoad number layout. I dont know why i prefer it more than the keyboard style but to me it is more natural to have 1 at the top and 9 at the bottom.
silverGFX
 liamthebof wrote: I much prefer the phone keyoad number layout. I dont know why i prefer it more than the keyboard style but to me it is more natural to have 1 at the top and 9 at the bottom.

Yeah...

I never really noticed that they were differnt at all until you mentioned it. I guess my brain just knew that the buttons were reversed and was used to going back and forth...

Kinda wierd how the brain knows but doesnt let YOU actually SEE it...
OMG!!! I KNOW YOUR TRYING TO CONTROL ME!!!! STOP!!!
[FuN]goku
 Davidgr1200 wrote: Well, how else would you distinguish between a calculator and a phone these days?
*snicker* Thats kind of true... I suppose if you slap a speaker and a mic on a TI-83+ calculator it could pass for a phone lol.
Vrythramax
I think this topic has run it's course.

-closed-