1. Introduction

Throughout the ages, people have always needed to calculate things. hand calculation

Tools such as the abacus were invented by the early Chinese to help keep track of large numbers.

It is probably hard for you to imagine, but as little as thirty years ago students only had pen, paper, slide rules and log books to help them in their maths exams.

There were no such things as calculators and certainly no personal computers.

Calculators eventually became commonplace tools and certainly helped to speed up calculations and improve accuracy.

But even they weren't really good enough to solve complex problems or deal with large amounts of repetitive work.

And so, once the technology was available, spreadsheets were developed.