History of Computer (part -3) - Ts Read

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

History of Computer (part -3)

Analytical Engine


This machine had 50,000 moving parts worked by mechanical gears. It was meant to do both arithmetic calculations and store data. Part of his plan was to make the machine control itself, make its own decisions, skip steps, go back over steps and have its own mechanism to input. output and process data. But, like all of us, he had his problems. Firstly, the technology of the day was not advanced enough to make his
This machine had 50,000 moving parts worked by mechanical gears. It was meant to do both arithmetic calculations and store data. Part of his plan was to make the machine control “itself, make its own decisions, skip steps, go back over steps and have its own mechanism to input. output and proceSs data. But, like all of us, he had his problems. Fiistly, the technology of the day was not advanced enough to make his ideas a reality . Secondly, there was really no demand for such a machine. And finally. the British Government withdrew its support for the project. So, the poor man died in total misery With many people believing him to be a visionary and a fool (When you read the rest, perhaps you will take heart when people think you are bananas !!!

Recently. however, engineers from IBM used his drawings and built the ANALYTICAL ENGINE. His ideas were perfect. Only it took a 100 years for people to accept it. Like the Good Book says, a prophet is always ahead of his times (“Ask me", the Mark 1 computer remarked: “If Babbage had lived 75 years later, I would have been out of a job"). And how right he was! Most of his ideas have wriggled their way into modern computers:


History of Computer

One person who believed Babbage was Lady Ada Lovelace (the computer language ADA is named after her). By the way, Ada  Lovelace was Lord Byronis daughter. Unusual as it was for a  woman of her day, she was a brilliant mathematician. She used a Special number system for Babbage’s machine. It was called the Binary Number System, one that every school boy today makes so much use of . We will speak more of the binary system later. 
Lovelace explained how the binary number system could be used to control Babbage’s machines and how they could be used to systematically analyse given data. It is for this reason that she is Lady Ada Lovelace. regarded as the First Programmer. Of Babbage’s machine she wrote: “The Analytical Engine Weaves algebraic patterns, just as Jacquard’s loom weaves flowers and leaves”.