By I. Bernard Cohen
with the cooperation of Robert V. D. CampbellThis choice of technical essays and recollections is a better half quantity to I. Bernard Cohen's biography, Howard Aiken: Portrait of a working laptop or computer Pioneer. After an outline by means of Cohen, half I offers the 1st whole booklet of Aiken's 1937 idea for an automated calculating desktop, which used to be later discovered because the Mark I, in addition to reminiscences of Aiken's first machines via the executive engineer answerable for building of Mark II, Robert Campbell, and the valuable programmer of Mark I, Richard Bloch. Henry Tropp describes Aiken's hostility to the particular use of binary numbers in computational structures and his substitute approach.Part II includes essays on Aiken's administrative and educating kinds by means of former scholars Frederick Brooks and Peter Calingaert and an essay by way of Gregory Welch at the problems Aiken confronted in developing a working laptop or computer technological know-how software at Harvard. half III comprises reminiscences by way of those that labored or studied with Aiken, together with Richard Bloch, Grace Hopper, Anthony Oettinger, and Maurice Wilkes. Henry Tropp offers excerpts from an interview performed earlier than Aiken's loss of life. half IV gathers the main major of Aiken's personal writings. The appendixes supply the specifications of Aiken's machines and record his doctoral scholars and the themes in their dissertations.
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Additional resources for Makin’ Numbers: Howard Aiken and the Computer
6. The process of ªnding anti-logarithms may be reduced to a reversal of the logarithmic process. Thus, if 20 Aiken y = 10x (a) then a + b + c + .. 10 100 y = 10 (b) 1 1 100 = (10)a × (1010 )b × (10 )c… (c) and repetitive discrimination and multiplication sufªces. 7. The trigonometric functions most commonly used are the sine and cosine, and from these all other trigonometric functions may be computed easily. Either of these functions may be computed from the other, but in the expansion of Fourier series both sines and cosines are required.
Further development has continued up to the present time, with ever increasing application to the solution of scientiªc problems requiring an accuracy of not more than three or four signiªcant ªgures, and when the total bulk of the computation is not too great. Proposed Automatic Calculating Machine 11 Particularly in engineering design has the slide rule proved to be an invaluable instrument. Though the slide rule was widely accepted, at no time, however, did it act as a deterrent to the development of the more precise methods of mechanical computation.
In the evaluation of inªnite series the number 24 might be greatly exceeded. To take care of this case it should be possible to introduce speciªc values by means of a perforated tape, the successive values being supplied by moving the tape ahead one position. Two such devices should be supplied. 7. The introduction of empirical data for non-repetitive operations can be accomplished best by standard punched card magazine feed. One such device should be supplied. 8. At various stages of a computation involving parentheses and brackets it may be necessary to hold a part of the result pending the computation of some other part.
Makin’ Numbers: Howard Aiken and the Computer by I. Bernard Cohen