computer science

30 years of Smileys :-)

30 years of Smileys :-)

On September 19, 1982, Scott Fahlman posted the first documented emoticons ūüôā and ūüôĀ on the Carnegie Mellon University Bulletin Board System. The original message from which these symbols originated was posted on September 19, 1982. The message was recovered by Jeff Baird on September 10, 2002 and is quoted: 19-Sep-82 11:44 Scott E Fahlman ūüôā From: Scott E Fahlman  I propose that the following character sequence for joke markers:  ūüôā …
Happy Birthday Linux!

Happy Birthday Linux!

Penguin Tux, the¬†Linux Mascot ¬© wikipedia On September 17, 1991, the Finnish student of computer science Linus Torvalds, uploaded Linux kernel version 0.01 to the ftp server ftp.funet.fi. This might be considered as the date of birth of the famous free operating system Linux, although Torvalds announced the new OS a few weeks earlier on usenet already. Nevertheless, Linux has become one of the most popular operating systems today, and…
The Bug that wasn’t really a Bug – Computer Pioneer Grace Murray Hopper

The Bug that wasn’t really a Bug – Computer Pioneer Grace Murray Hopper

The first documented¬†computer bug in a 1947 log file ¬© Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren, VA Most of you might think that computers is one of these men’s business things. Far from it! Not even that it was a girl who was the very first programmer in history – Ada Augusta King Countess of Lovelace – it was also a woman in the early days of computers, who developed the…
IBM and the Personal Computer

IBM and the Personal Computer

‘The IBM Personal Computer and me”, vintage IBM advertisement (1980s) It all started on August 12, 1981. IBM presented the IBM 5150, the very first IBM personal computer, commonly known as the IBM PC, is the original version and progenitor of the IBM PC compatible hardware platform. It was created by a team of engineers and designers under the direction of Philip Donald Estridge of the IBM Entry Systems Division…
It’s Computable – thanks to Alonzo Church

It’s Computable – thanks to Alonzo Church

Alonzo Church¬†(1903-1995) @ University of Berkeley You know, the fact that you can read your email on a cell phone as well as on your desktop computer or almost any other computer connected to the internet, in principle is possible thanks to mathematician Alonzo Church, who gave the proof (together with Alan Turing) that everything that is computable on the simple model of a Turing Machine, also is computable with…
It’s a computer! – The fabulous Commodore Amiga

It’s a computer! – The fabulous Commodore Amiga

In 1985 Commodore revolutionized the home computer market by introducing the high end Commodore Amiga with a graphic power that was unheard of by that time in this market segment. Based on the Motorola 68000 microprocessor series the Amiga was most successful¬†as a home computer, with a wide range of games and creative software, although¬†early Commodore advertisements attempted to cast the computer as an all-purpose business machine. In addition, it…
Let Us Calculate – the Last Universal Academic Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

Let Us Calculate – the Last Universal Academic Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646 – 1716) On July 1, 1646, one of the last universally interdisciplinary academics, active in the fields of mathematics, physics, history, politics, philosophy, and librarianship was born. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz counts as one of the most influential scientists of the late 17th and early 18th century and impersonates a meaningful representative of the Age of Enlightenment. Leibniz made up his interests concerning philosophy and law studies…
Churchill’s Best Horse in the Barn – Alan Turing, Codebreaker and AI Pioneer

Churchill’s Best Horse in the Barn – Alan Turing, Codebreaker and AI Pioneer

Alan Turing (1912-1954) ¬© National Portrait Gallery, London (UK) Outside the world of computer science or mathematics the name of probably the most influential figure and in some sense the father of all computing technology Alan Mathison Turing is hardly known. But it was him, who laid the foundations of the theory of computing. Already in the 1930s, when no digital electronic computer had ever been built, he has shown…
Ivan Sutherland – Well, I Didn’t Know it was Hard

Ivan Sutherland – Well, I Didn’t Know it was Hard

On May 16, 1938, American computer scientist and internet pioneer¬†Ivan Sutherland¬†was born.¬†¬†Sutherland¬†has received the Turing Award from the Association for Computing Machinery in 1988 for his invention of Sketchpad, an early predecessor to the sort of graphical user interface that has become ubiquitous in personal computers today. Sketchpad could accept constraints and specified relationships among segments and arcs, including the diameter of arcs. It could draw both horizontal and vertical…
Do You Speak Polish… Or Maybe Reverse Polish?

Do You Speak Polish… Or Maybe Reverse Polish?

HP 35s¬†Calculator (1972) I guess almost nobody except a few mathematicians and computer scientists have ever heard of the Australian computer scientist Charles Leonard Hamblin, who passed away on May 14, 1985. And also most of my fellow computer scientists might not have heard of him. But, one of his major contributions to computer science was the introduction of the so-called Reverse Polish Notation. Does that ring a bell Back…
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