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Editor: Donald J McCubbrey (Daniels College of Business, University of Denver, USA)

Reviewer: Roger K Baer (CPA, LLC; and Former Partner, Arthur Andersen&Co., USA)

There are many stories of how accounting began, but most writers agree that it has a long history, going back 5,000 years or so. Legend has it that wealthy individuals, wanting to keep track of their possessions (cattle, stores of grain, gold ornaments and so forth), hired scribes to keep records of additions and deletions to their lists of possessions as they bought, sold, or traded them. One supposes that that they wanted to be sure that any changes were legitimate; that losses were not due to theft, and that if 100 cattle were purchased that the herd increased by 100. From time to time, a count of possessions would be made and compared to the records maintained by the scribe. Any unexplained losses would be a signal that something was amiss and worthy of investigation.

Modern bookkeeping is generally thought to have been invented during the Italian Renaissance (around 1494 AD, according to one version:

Formal accounting was invented by a Franciscan friar named Luca Pacioli in 1494 in his paper "Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalita" ("Everything About Arithmetic, Geometry and Proportion").“The treatise described double-entry bookkeeping—that for every credit entered into a ledger there must be a debit, a concept created by Florentine merchants and hailed by Goethe as "one of the most beautiful discoveries of the human spirit". “Three traits shared by successful merchants, Mr. Pacioli wrote, were access to cash, a constantly updated accounting system and a good bookkeeper. His contemporary Christopher Columbus apparently knew that: On his voyage to the New World, he took a royal accountant to track his "swindle sheet when he started to figure the cost of gold and spices he would accumulate", according to Alistair Cooke's 1973 book "America." ( [link] )

In my opinion, Goethe was exaggerating when he called double entry bookkeeping "one of the most beautiful discoveries of the human spirit". I can think of many other discoveries that are more beautiful, but as the old saying goes: “Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder” and perhaps Goethe was a bookkeeper at heart. At any rate, the discovery of double-entry bookkeeping was undeniably important, because, as Wikipedia explains:

Double-Entry Bookkeeping is a system that ensures the integrity of the financial values recorded in a financial accounting system. It does this by ensuring that each individual transaction is recorded in at least two different (sections) nominal ledgers of the financial accounting system and so implementing a double checking system for every transaction. It does this by first identifying values as either a Debit or a Credit value. A Debit value will always be recorded on the debit side (left hand side) of a nominal ledger account and the credit value will be recorded on the credit side (right hand side) of a nominal ledger account . A nominal ledger has both a Debit (left) side and a Credit (right) side. If the values on the debit side are greater than the value of the credit side of the nominal ledger then that nominal ledger is said to have a debit balance.
Each transaction must be recorded on the Debit side of one nominal ledger and that same transaction and value is also recorded on the Credit side of another nominal ledger hence the expression Double-Entry (entered in two locations) one debit and one credit ( [link] ).

Here is a simple example to give you a feel for the way that double entry bookkeeping works: 

Let us assume that the owner of Bill’s Bicycle Shop, which we discussed above, bought some new bicycles on credit, for inventory. This is how the accounts would be affected:

Debit the inventory - new bicycles account: USD 2,000 Credit the accounts payable account: USD 2,000

Next let us assume that the owner had some extra cash and decided to pay down some of our bank loan. This is how the accounts would be affected:

Debit the loan from the bank account: USD 1,000 Credit the cash account: USD 1,000

Got questions? Get instant answers now!

Note two things. First, a single transaction affects two accounts (a double-entry). Secondly, note that a debit to an asset account increases the value of the account and a debit to a liability (or owner’s equity) account decreases its value. So, when USD 1,000 is paid to the bank, the debit to the loan from bank account reduces the amount we owe to the bank, and the credit to cash decreases the balance in our cash account.

Questions & Answers

how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
Maciej
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Harper
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
s.
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SUYASH Reply
for screen printed electrodes ?
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What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
Ebrahim
or in general
Ebrahim
in general
s.
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
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Cied
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I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
Porter
many many of nanotubes
Porter
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what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
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I'm interested in nanotube
Uday
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
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what is nano technology
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what is system testing?
AMJAD
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
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AMJAD
what is system testing
AMJAD
what is the application of nanotechnology?
Stotaw
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
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anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
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after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
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name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
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silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
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not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
Azam
Hello
Uday
I'm interested in Nanotube
Uday
this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
Prasenjit
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Prasenjit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Business fundamentals. OpenStax CNX. Oct 08, 2010 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11227/1.4
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