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Fathers of Modern Computers Essay

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According to studies by Think Insights, “80% of the world’s population has had a smart phone at one time or another.” While a statement like this may appear nothing more than trivial to someone from a modern setting, a little more than a decade ago the technology we take as an everyday affordance was merely a schematic in the back of someone’s head. These “Fathers of Modern Computers” are responsible for the extremely complex hardware and software that makes up the whole of your iPhone or the Samsung Galaxy. Without the philosophies and ideas behind the modern computer that this handful of mathematicians produced, smartphones, computers and laptops as we know them would never have existed.
One of the main contributors to the foundation of modern computer science is Charles Babbage. Born into a wealthy family, Charles was unhindered by financial burden for the majority of his life and was therefore able to pursue his personal interests freely. Eventually he attended Cambridge University in order to study Mathematics. Quickly realizing he was mentally years ahead of his teachers, he gradually moved away from classrooms and began to seek likeminded individuals. Charles eventually met John Herschel and George Peacock and formed the Analytical Society in which he drastically helped in weakening the grasp of Isaac Newton’s theories that were deeply engraved at the university. After years of research, he eventually began designing a machine called the Difference Engine; an invention that would become the basis for the first computer. It was capable of calculating a sequence of numbers to the 7th polynomial and would be able to print hard copies of the results for recordkeeping. Unfortunately due to financial disputes he was never able...


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...ries of writings called, “On Computable Numbers”. This series of papers focused on what the functions of a machine were and more importantly described what a computer was capable of performing. Turing’s works were important because they were the starting point for theories on self-operating machines and artificial intelligence and influenced the way companies would design their computers in the future.
Nowadays you don’t have to look very far to see just how far the benefits of computers has reached. Most of all modern machinery is a form of computer nowadays and is only getting more complex as evidenced by such advanced pieces of devices such as smartphones. However, everything has to start from somewhere and none of these advances in science would be possible without the bedrock of mathematical geniuses who helped pave the way for this innovation in technology.



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