Abacus

Abacus or abaco refers to calculations, especially the subject of direct calculations, using Hindu numerals without the help of the abacus (an instrument for calculating).

Significance

Firstly, because mathematics was associated with many professions, including trade, there was an increasing need to do away with the old Roman numeral system which produced too many errors.

Secondly, reading, writing, and some elementary math as job requirements for general occupations meant that literacy levels rose with the number of ordinary students attending institutions or being tutored at home.