The next machine came to be known as the paper roll machine. James Ritty mounted a wide paper roll horizontally above and across the keys inside the machine. Each key carried a sharp pin. When the key was depressed, its pin pricked a hole in the roll of paper just above the key. At the same time the paper roll would be advanced, or fed, one step. The result was that at the end of the days business the proprietor could remove the roll of paper, unroll the portion representing the day's sales, and count the holes in each column. If there were ten holes in the five cent column,
he simply multiplied ten by five which told him that he had done a fifty cent business in five cent sales. He could repeat the counting of holes in each of the other columns of holes and then add them all up to get the grand total of sales for the day. Thus the register not only told the owner the exact amount of the day's business but also the total done in each price range.