The history of computing hardware covers the developments from early simple devices to aid calculation to modern day computers.
Before the 20th century, most calculations were done by humans.
Around 1820, Charles Xavier Thomas de Colmar created what would over the rest of the century become the first successful, mass-produced mechanical calculator, the Thomas Arithmometer.
It could be used to add and subtract, and with a moveable carriage the operator could also multiply, and divide by a process of long multiplication and long division.
Numbers could also be represented in the form of digits, automatically manipulated by a mechanical mechanism.
Although this approach generally required more complex mechanisms, it greatly increased the precision of results.The castle clock, a hydropowered mechanical astronomical clock invented by Ismail al-Jazari in 1206, was the first programmable analog computer.Ramon Llull invented the Lullian Circle: a notional machine for calculating answers to philosophical questions (in this case, to do with Christianity) via logical combinatorics.Devices have been used to aid computation for thousands of years, mostly using one-to-one correspondence with fingers.The earliest counting device was probably a form of tally stick. What we now call the Roman abacus was used in Babylonia as early as c. Since then, many other forms of reckoning boards or tables have been invented.In 1804, Joseph-Marie Jacquard developed a loom in which the pattern being woven was controlled by a paper tape constructed from punched cards.The paper tape could be changed without changing the mechanical design of the loom.This idea was taken up by Leibniz centuries later, and is thus one of the founding elements in computing and information science.Scottish mathematician and physicist John Napier discovered that the multiplication and division of numbers could be performed by the addition and subtraction, respectively, of the logarithms of those numbers.Wilhelm Schickard, a German polymath, designed a calculating machine in 1623 which combined a mechanised form of Napier's rods with the world's first mechanical adding machine built into the base.Because it made use of a single-tooth gear there were circumstances in which its carry mechanism would jam.