The ENIAC Story: Historical Account of the Creation of the World's First Electronic Digital Computer

Topics: Computer, Personal computer, John von Neumann Pages: 3 (877 words) Published: December 9, 2014
Supplemental Reading Worksheet #1
The ENIAC Story – By Martin H. Weik, 1961 (web article)
Steve Wozniak - Gnomedex Presentation (.mp3 audio)
The ‘ENIAC Story’ is a historical account of the creation of the world’s first electronic digital computer. The intent of this reading is to provide some historical context to understanding today’s information systems. There are so many interesting stories and events that we could read about – but where it all began is probably as good as any place to get started. Some of us are old enough to remember when the first Personal Computers appeared in the mid 1970s, I bought my first computer in 1980 for $309 (I still have it and can’t bring myself to throw it out – despite my wife’s nagging). It was infinitely more powerful and useful than the ENIAC. My uncle paid nearly $70,000 to buy a mini-computer for his hospital billing business just 10 years earlier. Some of you may be old enough to remember the days of paper tape and punch-cards before Personal Computers. Most of you however, I suspect have grown up with Personal Computers and many of you don’t remember a time before Internet – for you it is nearly impossible to imagine a world with out Personal Computers. But here’s a thought – never mind before Personal Computers. What about before ENIAC (BE). Can you imagine running a financial institution like a bank without computers? What about the stock market – was there really a stock market before computers?
Mirror Link – With Photo!
1. What profound historical event led to the creation of the world’s first electronic digital computer – ENIAC? What does the abbreviation ENIAC refer to?

2. The initial contract for ENIAC was for $67,000. By 1946 how much had actually been spent?

3. Before ENIAC the most powerful numeric calculating device was the Bush differential analyzer. What was the most significant and severe...
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