The first computer?
3 years ago
The first computer?
Sort of but it wasn't fully stored program and although it would have worked in principle but was beyond the limitations of the engineering available at the time. Ada Lovelace was probably the first programmer. The machine "analytical engine" was never built to run her programme.
British Science Museum has built a chunk of one from the drawings.
-- Regards, Martin Brown
It was the first /programmable/ mechanical computer. And it was not called "The Babbage Engine", it was the "Difference Engine No. 2". That's not a good start to the webpage.
There have been many "first computers", for the many possible definitions of "computer" and whether you count by design or by actual working model.
The term "computer" was originally given to a person whose job was doing calculations (such as for trajectories for cannons). Such computers have been around for quite a while.
The first mechanical calculating machines were from the 1600's.
Babbage's innovation for his first Difference Engine was to automate it
- it was designed to print out tables of results, rather than just aid a human calculator (or "computer"). The innovation for his Analytical Engine, then the Difference Engine No. 2, was punched cards for programmability. (These were first used on Jacquard looms.)
But Babbage failed to make this machines - so the first working mechanical computers came a little later.
Arguably, the first real computer (excluding humans) was the Antikythera mechanism. But no one is entirely sure what it did.
I read about that. I was only used once and came up with an answer of 42. Then they ditched it as being obviously broken.
-- Rick C. - Get 1,000 miles of free Supercharging
On Mon, 7 Dec 2020 18:20:26 -0800 (PST), Rick C wrote as underneath :
See4:12 onwards - the mechanism is well understood now and reconstruction is possible! C+
ElectronDepot website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.