The Internet? Who Could Have Guessed?

I read this article written in the forty’s predicting future, post-war technology. A lot of it seemed eerily spot on. It predicted advanced mathematic machines that can be programmed using mnemonic code, which is essentially exactly what modern computers are. The mnemonic code would make commands much easier to remember and reduce the need for referencing guides. It predicted scientists being able to easily access key information related to studies and experiments without having to be too careful about storing it. It also spoke of information being compressed and stored in tiny spaces. It seems as though the author predicted the existence of the internet but did not predict it would be used on a massive consumer scale as it is, as he wrote mostly about scientists in labs and businesses. I found the bit about expediting store transactions particularly interesting.

I also researched the ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer). It was proposed by John Mauchly in 1942 and built between 1943 and 1945. Because it had no mechanical parts, it was able to run calculations at electronic speed. It was meant to calculate missile trajectory for the U.S. Army.

The ENIAC was programmed by six women who were never credited for their work until decades later.


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