EVOLUTION OF COMPUTING
Many inventions have
taken several centuries to develop into their modern forms and modern
inventions are rarely the product of a single inventor's efforts. The
bits and pieces of a computer (including the software) came together
over many centuries, many people each adding a small contribution. Each
of the inventions listed below were only one small step on the road to
the ultimate goal.
||Early man counted by means of
matching one set of objects with another set (stones and sheep).
Early tables, named abaci, formalized counting and introduced the
concept of positional notation.
||The Chinese abacus
was developed about 5000 years ago. It was built out of wood and beads. The abacus was so
successful that its use spread form China to many other countries.
the ninth century, the Persian mathematician Abu Abdullah Muhammad
bin Musa al-Khwarizmi
developed the concept of a written process to be followed to achieve
some goal, and published a book on the subject that gave us it's modern
||German scientist Wilhelm Schikard
invented a machine that used 11 complete and 6 incomplete sprocketed
wheels that could add and, with the aid of logarithm tables,
multiply and divide.
||The mechanical adding machine
was invented by a nineteen-year-old French boy named Blaise Pascal way back in the year
loom not only cut back on the amount of human labor, but also allowed for patterns to
now be stored on cards and to be utilized over and over again to achieve the same product.
||Charles Babbage, British mathematician and
inventor, who designed and built mechanical
computing machines - The Difference Engine, on principles that anticipated the modern
Ada Lovelace's set of instructions was a
forerunner of modern computer program,
and historians have credited her as the first computer programmer.
||Herman Hollerith devised a system of
encoding data on cards through a series of punched holes, a punch card machine. This system proved
useful in statistical work and was important in the development of the digital computer.
||In December 1939,
the first prototype of the Atanasoff Berry Computer (ABC) was ready.
The ABC showed some of the potentials of a computer and it amazed
the University. So in 1939,
Dr.John Vincent Atanasoff and his assistant Clifford
Berry built the world's first electronic digital computer.
||Alan Turing introduced the concept of a
theoretical computing device now known as a Turing
machine. The concept of this machine, which could theoretically perform any
mathematical calculation, was important in the development of the digital computer.
Howard Aiken with
his colleagues at Harvard - and with some assistance from
International Business Machines - by 1944 he had built the Mark I,
the world’s first program-controlled calculator; an early form of a
||John Mauchley, an American physicist, and J. Presper
Eckert, an American engineer, proposed an electronic digital computer, called the
Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer (ENIAC), completed in 1946 and is regarded
as the first successful, general digital computer.
||Teams of Bell Labs scientists, such as Shockley, Brattain,
Bardeen, and many others met the challenge.--and invented the information age. They
produced the greatest invention of the our time: the transistor.
Jay W, Forrester invented
the first random-access magnetic core store
(memory) for an electronic digital computer. He also supervised the
building of the Whirlwind digital computer and studied the
application of computers to management problems, developing methods
for computer simulation.
||Grace Hopper was credited with devising the first computer compiler, a program that translates
instructions for a computer from English to machine language.
||Machine vision used computers to analyze digitized
images from a video camera. It was a breakthrough invention and the
one of which Jerome Lemelson was most proud despite the hundreds of others
that he produced over the next forty-five years.
||It was a relatively simple device that Jack Kilby showed
to a handful of co-workers gathered in TIs semiconductor lab. Only a transistor and
other components on a slice of germanium. Kilbys invention, called an integrated circuit, was about to
revolutionize the electronics industry.
calculator was invented at Texas Instruments, Incorporated (TI) in 1966 by a
development team which included Jerry D. Merryman, James H. Van Tassel and Jack St. Clair
Robert Heath Dennard invented the one-transistor dynamic random access memory DRAM in 1967.
It has become the standard for the RAM industry and enabled the
||Ted Hoff's knowledge of computers (then still very large
machines) allowed him to design the computer-on-a-chip microprocessor (1968), which came
on the market as the Intel 4004 (1971), starting the microcomputer industry.
Douglas Engelbart had invented a number of interactive,
user-friendly information access systems that we take for granted today: the computer mouse was one of his inventions.
Robert Metcalfe needed something that was fast, could
connect hundreds of computers and span the whole building, Something
like a local area network, which Metcalfe developed in a rudimentary
form in 1973 and dubbed
The Internet and Transmission Control
Protocols (TCP/IP) were initially developed in 1973 by American computer scientist Vinton Cerf.
Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) invents protoype of the world's first
personal computer, the Alto, with innovations including the first
what-you-see-is-what-you-get editor, first commercial use of a mouse, graphical user
interface, and bit-mapped display. Its commercial descendant was the 8010 Star.
||In what is now the Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs and Steve
Wozniak created a homemade microprocessor computer board called Apple I Personal Computer..
||Dennis C. Hayes and Dale Heatherington
invent the PC modem in 1977, establishing the
critical technology that allowed today's online and Internet industries to emerge and
||The HX-20, the first
notebook-sized portable computer is introduced by Epson.
||The World Wide Web is a system of resources
that enable computer users to view and interact with a variety of information.
TO LEARN MORE
ON THE BOOKSHELF:
That Shaped World History
by Bill Yenne, Morton, Dr. Grosser (Editor) / Paperback - 112 pages (1983) / Bluewood Books
This book contains inventions from all around the world from microchips to fire. This is a
really good book if you are going to do research on inventions.
by Mary Northrup / Library Binding - 112 pages (July 1998) / Enslow Publishers,
This entry in the Collective Biographies series covers major players in the development of
the computer, from Herman Hollerith, the inventor of punch cards, through the inventors of
ENIAC and UNIVAC, as well as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Marc Andreessen of Netscape.
Computers: An Illustrated History
by Christian Wurster / Hardcover: 480 pages / TASCHEN America Llc; (February 2002)
Discover the fascinating history of computers, interfaces, and computer design in
this illustrated guide that includes pictures of nearly every computer ever made, an
informative text describing the computer's evolution up to the present day
History of the Information Machine
by Martin Campbell-Kelly, William Aspray / Paperback: 368 pages / HarperCollins;
This history of the computer explores the roots of the industry's phenomenal
development, tracing not only the development of the machine itself--beginning with
Charles Babbage's well-known 1883 mechanical prototype--but also chronicling the effects
of manufacturing and sales innovations by such companies as Remington and National Cash
Register that made the boom possible.
Machine: J.C.R. Licklider and the Revolution That Made Computing Personal
by Mitchell M. WaldropPaperback: 512 pages / Penguin USA; (August 27, 2002)
If you had to choose just one 20th-century computer pioneer that we couldn't do
without, it would have to be the man behind the Dream Machine.
Triumphs and Tragedies of the World's First Computer
by Scott McCartney / Hardcover - 262 pages / Walker & Co
Eckert and Mauchly later lost the patent on their machine
when it was claimed that another early experimenter, John Atanasoff, had given them all
the ideas about ENIAC that mattered.
The Universal History of Computing: From the Abacus to the Quantum
by Georges Ifrah / Hardcover - 356 pages (October 2000) / John Wiley & Sons
The author has great respect for our ancestors and their work, and he transmits this
feeling to his readers with humor and humility. His timelines, diagrams, and concordance
help the reader who might be unfamiliar with foreign concepts of numbers and
computation keep up with his narrative.
The Universal History of Numbers : From Prehistory to the Invention
of the Computer
by Georges Ifrah / Hardcover: 656 pages / Wiley; (November 19, 1999)
Dubbed the "Indiana Jones of
numbers," Georges Ifrah traveled all over the world for ten years to
uncover the little-known details of this amazing story. From India
to China, and from Egypt to Chile, Ifrah talked to mathematicians,
historians, archaeologists, and philosophers.
Where Wizards Stay Up Late: The Origins of the Internet
by Katie Hafner, Matthew Lyon (Contributor) / Paperback - 304 pages
(1998) / Touchstone Books
Hafner and Lyon have written a well-researched story of the origins of the
Internet substantiated by extensive interviews with its creators. Essential reading for
anyone interested in the past -- and the future -- of the Net specifically, and
ON THE SCREEN:
DVD / 1 Volume Set / 50 Minutes / History Channel / Less than $25.00 /
The incredible breakthroughs and refinements that have marked the
development of the computer are so familiar that they have lost some
of their power to amaze
ON THE WEB:
American Computer Museum
Located in Bozeman, Montana, USA is one of the world's largest and most
comprehensive collection of computer and information age history anywhere on public
Babbage's Calculating Engines 1832-1871
Charles Babbage's calculating engines are among the most celebrated icons in the
prehistory of computing. His Difference Engine No. 1 was the first successful automatic
calculator and remains one of the finest examples of precision engineering of the time.
The Science Museum of London has a working model of the Difference Engine Number 2 on
History of the Internet
From the Internet Society
The Museum of HP Calculators displays and describes Hewlett-Packard calculators introduced
from 1968 to 1986 plus a few interesting later models. There are also sections on
calculating machines and slide rules as well as sections for buying and selling HP
calculators, an HP timeline, collecting information and a software library.
The Charles Babbage Institute is an historical archives and research
center of the University of Minnesota. CBI is dedicated to promoting
study of the history of information technology and information
processing and their impact on society.
Within our time line you will find a very detailed section listing
key events to the evolution of computers. Computer history from B.C.
to today, includes people and company profiles.
Computers in the Office
SciTech, Carbons to Computers series from the Smithsonian Institution.
As we continue to barrel through the information age,
it is hard to imagine conducting business without computers.
Computer Museum of America
The mission of the Computer Museum of America is to preserve the major milestones in the
development of the computer industry and to chronicle these milestones for the enrichment
and education of all. Our exhibits highlight the history of data processing and the
contributions of pioneers in the field.
From the history of the computer. Presented by The Computer Society.
SciTech, Carbons to Computers series from the Smithsonian Institution.
From ABACUS to IBM
Article by J. B. Browning for the University of North Carolina at Wilmington
The computer is a defining symbol of 20th century technology - a
tool that has transformed businesses and lives around the world,
increased productivity, and opened access to vast amounts of
knowledge.Chosen as the #8 greatest engineering achievement of the
20th Century by the National Academy of Engineering.
of Calculating Machines
Blaise Pascal dosen't get all the credit. What about Wilhelm Schickard and
Leonardo da Vinci.
The History of
The foundation (tHoCF) is dedicated to the history of computing in
the widest meaning of the word. The foundation's collection of
historical documentation provides the raw material of future
history. It is used by students, historians and museums around the
History of the Computer
Computers have their beginnings back in pre-history, starting with
the abacus. Have a look! Timeline from the PBS series "Triumph of the
A History of the Microprocessor
You've arrived at Intel's interactive history of the microprocessor. Lots of
COOKIES at this site.
Xerox Corporation gathers together a team of world-class researchers
in information sciences and physical sciences and gives them the
mission to create "the architecture of information." The Xerox Palo
Alto Research Center (PARC) officially opens its doors in Palo Alto,
California on July 1, 1970.
A Short History
of the Web
Has told by Tim Berners-Lee.
The Software History Center is dedicated to preserving the history
of the software industry, one of the largest and most influential
industries in the world today.
Virtual Museum of Computing
This virtual museum includes an eclectic
collection of World Wide Web (WWW) hyperlinks
connected with the history of computing and on-line computer-based exhibits available both
locally and around the world.