Christie's auction and other computer history events

From: Tom Jennings <>
Date: Thu Feb 17 14:45:52 2005

On Thu, 17 Feb 2005, Computer Collector Newsletter wrote:

> Also: >>>> Babbage's work wasn't even known to most of the 20th century
> computer pioneers
> That's interesting; is it documented anywhere?

It's not true. Many acknowledged him; Americans tended not to.
I've got a half-dozen books, pre-1960, who mention him in context.

Hell, anything with "Engine" in the name is a nod to Babbage --
and I'm not making that up from the linguistic reference, those
that used it (eg. Turing) explicitly stated such.

It's sad to say, most of the early american computer people --
pretty much anyone in the Mauchly influence -- are really terrible
about their own history. E amd M made, I'm sorry to say, crap.
UNIVAC machines were horrors. Look at the British machines at the
time, far, far cleaner and those crazy brits put more emphasis on
programming. Imagine that.

Briefly fact-check LEO (1951) vs. UNIVAC (1954) and see the

Not only do AMericans not invent everything, we in fact haven't
invented a lot; but we develop the livin' shit out of it.

flames to /dev/null
Received on Thu Feb 17 2005 - 14:45:52 GMT

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