Today we take computers for granted. They are seamlessly integrated into our everyday lives and provide the basis for just about every transaction and job that we carry out. It wasn’t always like this though.
While there are many classifications of what constitutes a computer, it is generally accepted that the first mechanical computer was invented by Charles Babbage in 1822. Of course, it looked nothing like what we understand as a computer in this digital age.
The first use of the term ‘computer’ was actually as early as 1613 and described a person who was adept at performing calculations or computations. The word has stuck with us and now refers to a machine that does the calculating for us. The ‘Difference Engine’ that Babbage created could compute several sets of numbers and provide copies of the results. By 1837, Babbage had the concept of an Analytical Engine which would be the first general mechanical computer. It contained an Arithmetic Logic Unit, punch cards and an integrated memory.
The world’s first programmable computer was designed by Konrad Zuse in his living room between 1936 and 1938. It is considered to be the first properly functional computer in the modern sense and was called the Z1. For more modern technology, consider Cheap Laptops from a site such as refurbishedlaptops.co.uk/
Many of the foundations of computer programming today were formed by Alan Turing who proposed the idea for the Turing Machine in 1936. It was a mechanical device able to print symbols that copied the actions of a person following instructions. Without the work of Turing, we would not have the use of computers today. Now we can access information on multiple devices such as laptops, PCs, tablets and mobile phones.