Who Invented The First Computer?

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Who Invented The First Computer?

Who Invented The First Computer?

 

 

Who was the first computer? The answer depends on how you define the term. According to Merriam-Webster, a computer is an electronic device.

But most experts agree that computers can be divided into two types: analog and digital. In fact, the first two types do not need an electrical supply.

Similarly, an analog computer can be used without electricity. Here are some of the early computers. They are Charles Babbage, Thomson, Atanasoff-Berry, Colossus I, and more.

Charles Babbage

Charles Babbage


A British mathematician, Babbage was an outspoken opponent of public nuisances such as street games and drunkenness.

He died at the age of sixty-two of a suspected bladder infection, but his greatest legacy is his invention of the computer.

Babbage was frustrated with the fallibility of human computation.

In the 19th century, calculations were done by hand, so even a slight mistake in one calculation could have disastrous results.

During the mid-1830s, Babbage created plans for an electronic device resembling a modern digital computer. His machine would store numbers and perform any arithmetical operation.

It would also have sequential control and a memory unit for storing numbers.

Babbage was unsuccessful in getting funding to build his first machine, but his ideas influenced other great minds of the time.

After his death, he was hailed as the inventor of the computer.

Despite his failure, Babbage’s ideas for a mechanical computer were still influential, and the DE2 has now become a working prototype of his Analytical Engine.

The DE2 is displayed in London’s Science Museum. A replica of the Analytical Engine has yet to be built, but Babbage’s original design is on display there.

It is still unclear if the Analytical Engine will ever be built, but the DE2 is a working model that has helped researchers and the public learn more about Babbage.

The invention of the computer is closely tied to his background. Born in London, Babbage was the son of a banker.

He was fascinated with numbers and eventually earned a Lucasian chair of mathematics at Cambridge University.

His early life was not very happy as he was unable to find a teaching position. His short temper and curmudgeonly character led to less than collegial interactions.

Thomson

Thomson


William Thomson was a physicist who was knighted and raised to the peerage.

His invention of the machine allowed scientists to make complicated calculations, including predicting tides.

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Though this device was the first computer, Thomson shared the honor with his brother James’s differential analyzer.

The latter utilized wheel and disc mechanisms to solve differential equations. The Thomson machine was an instant success and was widely used in many different fields.

Today, Thomson computers still maintain the same high standards as the ones they produced in the 80s.

The newest models have advanced features, including a high-definition IPS display, the latest generation chipset, and dual boot.

Many of the new models can be connected to smartphones and tablets with the help of OTG USB flash drives.

Future models are expected to incorporate 8-bit adventures and retro compatibility, and possibly a nano-network.

Thomson used a specialized vacuum tube known as a Crookes tube. He used it to study several phenomena, including the effect of the magnetic force on electrical discharges.

He also studied the difference in charges carried by cathode rays inside and outside of a tube. This work helped Thomson develop the first computer.

Ultimately, the computer he created will become a part of everyday life. And because of his work, he has been able to improve the lives of so many people.

In his time, Thomson was an important figure in physics. He advanced ideas proposed by Michael Faraday, Joseph Fourier, and George Joule.

By combining these concepts, he helped the field of physics grow and advance to the next level.

Thomson was a key contributor to many fields of science, and he created mathematical analogies between electricity and heat flow in solids.

The theory of quantum mechanics and relativity is directly related to his work.

Atanasoff-Berry

Atanasoff-Berry


The Atanasoff-Berry Computer was the first automatic electronic digital computer.

It was not a Turing-complete, programmable, or even arithmetic-logic unit, so it was extremely limited for its day.

Despite its shortcomings, the Atanasoff-Berry Computer was a significant step forward. It was developed by John Vincent Atanasoff and Clifford E. Berry.

The Atanasoff-Berry Computer was built between 1937 and 1942. It contained one mile of wire, 280 dual-triode vacuum tubes, and 31 thyratrons.

Its memory consisted of two drums and 1600 capacitors. It ran at thirty additions and subtractions per second, but it was only capable of processing about 60 numbers at a time.

The Atanasoff-Berry Computer was made to perform arithmetic and binary computations.

The device was a combination of transistors, with binary and hexadecimal arithmetic.

The first commercially available computer was a model that ran calculations by storing data on memory. However, it proved impractical to use in the real world.

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In the late spring of 1940, the project had already begun. The team at Iowa State College considered patenting the machine and applying for extra funding to develop the machine.

They wrote a 35-page manuscript, including drawings of the machine.

The document was sent to a Chicago patent lawyer, Richard R. Trexler, who was hired to help them protect their invention.

The Atanasoff-Berry Computer was not programmable at that time. John Atanasoff had an idea for a machine that could perform mathematical calculations.

Mauchly was intrigued by the idea and invited Atanasoff and Berry to see it in person.

They then visited the patent office in Washington to make sure that their concept was completely new.

The pair completed a small prototype within two months. It had 300 vacuum tubes and could perform complex algebraic equations.

Colossus I

Colossus I


Max Newman was a mathematician and worked on the project to develop a machine that could break the Lorenz cipher machine.

He wanted the machine to count up to five data streams at once, and he thought it was the first machine to do so.

The Colossus was designed as a result of a previous project called Heath Robinson, which had already proved that the concept of machine analysis could work against a cipher machine.

However, it was difficult to synchronize the two looped paper tapes. The Colossus was made to perform five comparisons in parallel.

This is possible by using a shift register, which was used to store the last six bits of a tape. This made it possible to calculate five deltas at once.

The name of the shift register comes from the way bits are stored in the register. The oldest bit is removed before the new bit is stored.

This process was repeated over, and the Colossus was deemed the first computer. Tommy Flowers delivered the Colossus to codebreakers at Bletchley Park in December 1943.

By January 1944, it was operating successfully. The Colossus had been designed for military cryptanalysis.

The computer contained an electronic memory and could be programmed with patch cords. It could look for matching sequences of code words and then output a telegraph message.

Ultimately, the Colossus would prove its worth by breaking codes and preventing war. When the Colossus was built, the computer was still in its prototype stage.

Eventually, the Colossus Mark 1 and Colossus Mark 2 were built. By early 1944, Colossus Mark 1 was ready for use at Bletchley Park.

Colossus Mark 2 was completed in 1944, just in time for the D-Day invasion.

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In total, there were ten Colossi working at Bletchley Park and intercepting radio telegraphy messages throughout Europe.

Alan Turing

Alan Turing


While the modern computer is still not an exact replica of the computer he invented decades ago, it is still a far cry from the manual machine.

Alan Turing is credited with the invention of computer science in general. But, what exactly was his contribution to the computer age?

Here are some facts about Turing. A film about Turing is being produced to commemorate his achievements.

A documentary titled Turing: Godfather of Computers will be released in the UK on 23 June.

Alan Turing’s logical theory of the Universal Machine was a crucial contribution to computer science, and his 1945 design was completely independent of the EDVAC proposal.

It looked at the future much more ambitiously.

While this idea is still considered a major breakthrough in computer history, Turing never claimed to have been the first person to make a computer.

In fact, he made a modest salary for his efforts. His work can be categorized into three distinct chronological phases.

The first phase was the conception of a computer using mathematical equations. Turing studied mathematics at the University of Cambridge and eventually won a fellowship there.

His 1936 paper “On Computable Numbers” was published in the Proceedings of the London Mathematical Society.

He described a real machine based on 0s and 1s. He also developed an imitation game called “The Imitation Game” that tested the computer’s ability to perform calculations.

In 1951, Turing had a sexual relationship with a 19-year-old unemployed man named Arnold Murray. The two men met outside a cinema in Manchester and later had lunch together.

Turing’s house was robbed on 23 January 1952. Turing and Murray both later denied having sex.

The British government tried to incarcerate him and forced him to undergo hormone therapy to reduce his libido.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

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