Questions tagged [computers]

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160 views

What technologies were used before JavaScript?

I made a small research about the history before JavaScript was available to use, but I couldn't find much. I only found several plugins that was used, such as Adobe Flash, ActiveX. So, what I want ...
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1answer
43 views

Overflow behavior in turn counters of Odhner-style arithmometers

I have a Felix M Arithmometer (shown below) that appears to follow the same design as an Odhner arithmometer. One thing I noticed about the device is that the turn counter (on the left) does not ...
5
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0answers
145 views

Was there an intentional purge of all audio recordings of Alan Turing?

The YouTube video Alan Turing's lost radio broadcast rerecorded contains a re-enactment of Alan Turing's lecture broadcast by the BBC. In the introduction, the narrator (James Grimes, also of the ...
4
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1answer
73 views

What/When was the first radio nav system capable of triangulating your position?

What was the first radio navigation system capable of triangulating your position, and when was it built? How accurate was it and what was its range? This does not have to be GPS or a satellite ...
2
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0answers
114 views

When did William (Bill) Burke, who discovered the first actual bug, live and die?

Grace Hopper is frequently credited with finding the first actual bug. In fact, she just popularized the story of how William (Bill) Burke found the bug in the Mark II computer and documented it. I'...
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1answer
121 views

How did people realize they could do logic with electronics?

How did people realize they could do logic with electronics? Are there anecdotes of the first realizations? I'm wondering about the first "eureka" moments.
5
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1answer
101 views

To constructivists, is “mind” more than a convenient synonym for “algorithm”?

I could give (but, not being a professional historian, nor a native Dutch speaker, only few) references and background-remarks, but I will keep this short, to make more use of what a Q&A-sites ...
2
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2answers
463 views

Earliest concrete example of a binary / digital computing device

I am trying to trace (as far as known) the first example of a digital computing device. I am discounting (no pun) an abacus because I regard that as a device for representing, storing and manipulating ...
2
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2answers
159 views

Essential basic geometrical discoveries still possible in our era?

Can we imagine that scientific can still discover some basic simple but essential geometric rules such as the Pythagorean theorem in a near of far future: $a^2 + b^2 = c^2$ Or do we consider that ...
8
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1answer
273 views

Did Turing know of Babbage's work?

Did Turing have any knowledge of Babbage's work? Is it known if he ever mentioned Babbage?
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0answers
53 views

Is it true that Stephen Hawking got the computer with his wheelchair by coincidence?

In the recent movie about Stephen Hawking it is displayed that it is a coincidence that he got a computer with his wheelchair: Some friend was a computer engineer and installed the computer for him. ...
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0answers
114 views

How many computers are there?

There are about 7.13 billion humans alive today. When installing Java, it says that 3 billion devices run Java. The question is, out of how many? How many computing devices that have enough ...
5
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1answer
186 views

Why were British WWII computing machines and their projects distroyed after the war ended?

I've seen from a number of sources that both the Colossus and the cryptological bombes operating for England were dismantled after the war ended. The Wikipedia article even says that all of Colossus' ...
8
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1answer
571 views

Is the modern “is defined as” notation from computer programming?

To my knowledge, the symbol for "is defined as" historically has been the notation, $\equiv$ or $\triangleq$. More recently, however, the notation $:=$ seems to have overtaken the latter two notations ...