From PCalc developer James Thomson on the calculator’s 30th anniversary:
I was looking for a small project to learn how to program my new Mac properly, and I remembered the graphics I’d done for the control panel, and thought that they would work well for a calculator as well. Take note of “a small project just to do X”, this will be referred to many times during this story.
The built-in Mac OS calculator of the day was a very simple affair, and so I decided I would write a calculator that could do binary and hex, to help me with my programming. And so the idea for PCalc was born.
Who would have expected that a calculator app would thrive for 30 years, evolving through multiple Mac chip architectures and Apple operating systems and gaining easter eggs, in-app games, and spin-offs along the way? Read on for all that, PCalc’s connection to Douglas Adams of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and more great stories.