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The history of the computer since the invention of simple arithmetic calculations

Prehistory[ edit ] The earliest known tool for use in computation was the abacusdeveloped in the period between — BCE in Sumer. Panini used metarules, transformations and recursions. It was discovered in in the Antikythera wreck off the Greek island of Antikythera, between Kythera and Creteand has been dated to circa BC.

Sir William Thomson 's third tide-predicting machine design, —81 In the first half of the 20th century, analog computers were considered by many to be the future of computing. These devices used the continuously changeable aspects of physical phenomena such as electricalmechanicalor hydraulic quantities to model the problem being solved, in contrast to digital computers that represented varying quantities symbolically, as their numerical values change.

As an analog computer does not use discrete values, but rather continuous values, processes cannot be reliably repeated with exact equivalence, as they can with Turing machines. It used a system of pulleys and wires to automatically calculate predicted tide levels for a set period at a particular location and was of great utility to navigation in shallow waters.

His device was the foundation for further developments in analog computing. He explored the possible construction of such calculators, but was stymied by the limited output torque of the ball-and-disk integrators.

The lever just in front of the bomb aimer's fingertips sets the altitude, the wheels near his knuckles set the wind and airspeed. An important advance in analog computing was the development of the first fire-control systems for long range ship gunlaying.

When gunnery ranges increased dramatically in the late 19th century it was no longer a simple matter of calculating the proper aim point, given the flight times of the shells.

Various spotters on board the ship would relay distance measures and observations to a central plotting station. There the fire direction teams fed in the location, speed and direction of the ship and its target, as well as various adjustments for Coriolis effectweather effects on the air, and other adjustments; the computer would then output a firing solution, which would be fed to the turrets for laying.

InBritish engineer Arthur Pollen developed the first electrically powered mechanical analogue computer called at the time the Argo Clock. Mechanical devices were also used to aid the accuracy of aerial bombing.

Drift Sight was the first such aid, developed by Harry Wimperis in for the Royal Naval Air Service ; it measured the wind speed from the air, and used that measurement to calculate the wind's effects on the trajectory of the bombs.

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The art of mechanical analog computing reached its zenith with the differential analyzer[49] built by H. A dozen of these devices were built before their obsolescence became obvious; the most powerful was constructed at the University of Pennsylvania 's Moore School of Electrical Engineeringwhere the ENIAC was built.

Advent of the digital computer[ edit ] The principle of the modern computer was first described by computer scientist Alan Turingwho set out the idea in his seminal paper, [53] On Computable Numbers. He proved that some such machine would be capable of performing any conceivable mathematical computation if it were representable as an algorithm.

He went on to prove that there was no solution to the Entscheidungsproblem by first showing that the halting problem for Turing machines is undecidable: He also introduced the notion of a 'Universal Machine' now known as a Universal Turing machinewith the idea that such a machine could perform the tasks of any other machine, or in other words, it is provably capable of computing anything that is computable by executing a program stored on tape, allowing the machine to be programmable.

Von Neumann acknowledged that the central concept of the modern computer was due to this paper. Except for the limitations imposed by their finite memory stores, modern computers are said to be Turing-completewhich is to say, they have algorithm execution capability equivalent to a universal Turing machine.

Electromechanical computers[ edit ] The era of modern computing began with a flurry of development before and during World War II.A computer is a device that can be instructed to carry out sequences of arithmetic or logical operations automatically via computer programming.

Modern computers have the ability to follow generalized sets of operations, called programs. Arithmetic (from the Greek ἀριθμός arithmos, "number") is a branch of mathematics that consists of the study of numbers, especially the properties of the traditional operations on them—addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

Throughout human history, the closest thing to a computer was the abacus, which is actually considered a calculator since it required a human operator.

Computers, on the other hand, perform calculations automatically by following a series of built-in commands called software.

In the 20 th century. The history of the computer began years ago with the invention of the abacus.

Though this invention only allowed for simple arithmetic calculations, it was still very effective. A great many years after this, another calculation device, the first digital calculator, was created by Blai. A Short History of Computers and Computing Robert Mannell One of the earliest machines designed to assist people in calculations was the abacus which is still being used some years after its invention.

Peter Lablans is a prolific inventor and founder of two IP companies Ternarylogic LLC and Spatial Cam LLC and is the named inventor on over 50 patents. He is an Electronic Engineer trained by Dr.

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