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Annals of the History of Computing, IEEE

Issue 1 • Date Jan. 2011

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Displaying Results 1 - 15 of 15
  • [Front cover]

    Page(s): c1
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  • [Front cover]

    Page(s): c2
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  • Contents

    Page(s): 1
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  • From the Editor's Desk

    Page(s): 2 - 3
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  • The Manchester Computer: A Revised History Part 1: The Memory

    Page(s): 4 - 21
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    The Manchester Baby, built by F.C. Williams and Tom Kilburn and operational in June 1948, was the first stored-program electronic computer. The Williams-Kilburn tube memory, pioneered in the Baby, was subsequently adopted in many first-generation computers, including the Princeton IAS machine and the IBM 701. Part 1 of this article provides an overview of the Manchester project and its personnel and documents the origins of the Williams-Kilburn tube. View full abstract»

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  • The Manchester Computer: A Revised History Part 2: The Baby Computer

    Page(s): 22 - 37
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    The logical design of the 1948 Manchester Baby was virtually identical to a 1946 Princeton design. However, thanks to F.C. Williams' and Tom Kilburn's groundbreaking cathode ray tube (CRT) memory and their innovative engineering, the universal electronic digital computer made its world debut in Manchester. This article reassesses the place of Williams and Kilburn in the history of computing. View full abstract»

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  • Kissinger's Computer: National Security Council Computerization, 1969–1972

    Page(s): 38 - 51
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    After National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger ordered the National Security Council to adopt computers to improve its information-management capabilities in 1969, it employed the RAND Corporation, which championed its view of White House needs, and project manager Charles Joyce from the Department of Defense, who championed users' needs. The ensuing process illustrates how institutional constraints and resources have a powerful effect on technology adoption. View full abstract»

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  • Losing Meanings: Computer Games in Dutch Domestic Use, 1975–2000

    Page(s): 52 - 65
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    Computer games were originally tools that let programmers demonstrate their craftsmanship, and firms used them to demystify computer operation and lure new individuals and groups. As computers became widespread, use and attitudes of actors toward games changed. With examples from the Netherlands, this article shows how games in domestic use lost their versatile meanings beyond entertainment. View full abstract»

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  • INWG and the Conception of the Internet: An Eyewitness Account

    Page(s): 66 - 71
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  • Donald McIntyre: Geologist, Historian, and Array Language Advocate, 1923–2009

    Page(s): 72 - 77
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  • Events and Sightings

    Page(s): 78 - 82
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  • Reviews [review of "A Vast Machine: Computer Models, Climate Data, and the Politics of Global Warming" (Edwards, P.N.; 2010) and "The Last Good War" (Wonnacott, P.; 2007)]

    Page(s): 83 - 85
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  • Programming and Planning

    Page(s): 86 - 88
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    Some 15 years ago, I argued in the Annals that the word program entered the vocabulary of computer developers from the ENIAC project. Within the ENIAC, the term referred to the control signal that synchronized and directed the actions of the machine's individual units. "It is convenient in discussing the ENIAC to distinguish between the numerical circuits (which operate on signals representing numbers) and the programming circuits (which recognize when and how a unit is to operate and which then stimulate the numerical circuits to operate)," wrote Adele and Her mann Goldstine in their initial published paper on the ENIAC. Eight years would pass before the field would shift the usage of the word program away from the electronic circuits that controlled the machine toward the symbolic instructions that describe a set of opera tions to be set in motion by those circuits. In the intervening time, engineers more commonly used the word planning to describe the process of preparing a list of instructions for a computer. Konrad Zuse called his programming language PlanKalcul. The Mathematical Tables Project, which operated on the cusp of the electronic computing era, was gov erned by a planning committee. The initial articles on programming techniques by John von Neumann and Herman Goldstine were called "Planning and Coding Problems for an Electronic Computer." The term plan derived from the production engineer ing field, a discipline that developed in the 1920s in England in response to the production demands of World War I. The story of its usage shows how the con cept of programming started to develop and suggests, as authors such as Michael Mahoney have argued, that programming owes much to production engineering and the fields that derived from it, notably systems engineering. View full abstract»

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  • [Advertisement - Back cover]

    Page(s): c3
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    Page(s): c4
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Aims & Scope

From the analytical engine to the supercomputer, from Pascal to von Neumann, from punched cards to CD-ROMs -- theIEEE Annals of the History of Computing covers the breadth of computer history.

Full Aims & Scope

Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Lars Heide
Copenhagen Business School
Centre for Business History