Significance of Individuals in the Development of Digital Technologies
Charles Babbage was an expert English mathematician, inventor, philosopher and a mechanical engineer who contributed to the development of digital computers by discovering the principle of a programmed computer. He is credited with the development and designing of the first computing machine called difference engine that compiled and printed mathematical tables and also could compute a set of numbers and print their results in hard copies. This was the first electronic booming automatic calculator which has based the development for the modern digital electronic calculators. Charles Babbage is also credited with the development and designing of the first computer analytical engine. It consisted of Arithmetic and Logic Unit (ALU), integrated memory and basic flow control which bases the principle of the first general purpose computer in the development of digital technologies.
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George Boole was an English mathematician, logician and philosopher. His field in the mathematics was algebraic logic and differential equations. Through algebraic logic in his field of mathematics, George Boole inverted the Boolean logic, which formed the base of the modern electronics digital technologies particularly the modern digital computers. Anything digital uses Boolean value, which has only two definite states (“1” or “0”). This led to the development of the binary code that is currently used as the computer language.
Boolean value is used by computer programmers, while hard coding the validity check is applied into computer systems in order to keep the integrity of the data. Boolean is also used by the computer science engineer to create and design electronic circuits consisting of simple switches, control elements and relays. This has led Boolean to have a very wide application in the field of designing high speed computers that use binary system of digital numbers. George Boole contributed a lot to the development of digital technologies by inventing Boolean value that is used in all digital age system replacing the analog technology, which used a varying value hence created many problems in controlling electronic circuits.
Konrad Zuse was a German civil engineer, computer pioneer and inventor. Konrad Zuse great achievement and contribution to the development of the digital technologies is important particularly in the development of computers. He designed the first world’s functional program controlled turning complete computer which was called Z3 and became into operation in 1941. This was a binary oriented with 22-bit floating calculator that featured programmability by loops with no conditional jumps, with a high-capacity memory and relays or modules, which operated on yes or no principle. It used a punched tape to store the programs (program instructions). Through this invention it has led to the need of developing many other ways of storing programs or set of instructions in the modern computers. He continued his inventions by designing Z4 which was the first world’s commercial computer.
Konrad also designed the first process controlled computer, S2 computing machine. This machine was integrated with ADC (analog to digital converter) which made easier in program control processes. S1 and S2 computing machines had special purpose and could be used in control of flying bombs. This has led to the development of Konrad technologies in the modern world of military controlled flying bombs operation. In 1943 to 1945, Konrad designed first high level programming language, called plankalkul, which he used in programming of his computers. Z-series was continues to Z64, whereby he designed and built Z22 and Z23 with vacuum tubes, which had serial registers that allowed use of less components and hence having a minimum number of instructions. This made it possible for the programmer using a complier to write code using syntax that could be in between high-programming language and assembly code. In 1961, he introduced Graphomat, which was a plotter that could be used by geologists and architects to generate drawings and diagrams.
Nikola Tesla is a Serbian-American physicist and engineer, who had an extraordinary personality in electric power production, its transmission and applications. Tesla invented the first AC (alternating current) motors and he also developed the AC generation and its transmission technology that is currently used over the world by the digital appliances and equipments. Nikola Tesla invented the Tesla’s coaxial cable that is used as a simple and cheap means of transmitting high frequency signal in the Internet and cable television in the modern digital technologies. In the transmission lines, he developed receivers and transmitters that used digital modulation of signals. This solved the problems of the prior technologies, which had a problem in modulation whereby they utilized a lot of bandwidth in the transmission of the signal. In the modern digital age, digital modulation is the basic principle for communication, particularly in mobile technologies and connecting computer apparatus in small distances. Nikola Tesla is the one who predicted the mobile technology, Internet services and wireless transmission of power, which he proofed in 1899 by lighting 200 bulbs from the power source which was 26 miles away.
John Von Neumann
John Von Neumann is considered to be the greatest mathematician of his times whereby he had a photographic memory and superhuman ability to do mental calculation. In his computing study, he discovered that computers can have a simple and fixed structure that can execute all kind of computation, when properly programmed control is initiated, without the using the hardware. He also introduced new understanding on how practical faster computers could be built and organized. These new techniques became universally adopted and formed the bases of the high speed digital computers. These techniques were more flexible, efficient and faster. This led to the development of the first generation of the modern programmable electronic computers in 1947. He also introduced the idea of storing computer programs in computer memory as coded form rather than punch cards as in the earlier computers. Additionally, he came up with the idea, where program and data could be stored in the same space whereby the machine will only be altering either the internal data or programs. In 1943, John Von Neumann crucially did calculation about the design of the atomic bomb and hence developing more deadly and efficient weapon.
Steve Jobs is one of the people who successfully explored the field of developing a personal computer in the Apple II series. Steve Jobs is among the first persons to develop a Xerox PARC’s mouse driven interface with the user that led to the development of Apple and Macintosh a year later. This is the man who introduced laser writer, which led to the designing of the laser printer widely used today. In the 1990, Steve Jobs revised the first NFXT computer and designed the second generation, which could share image, voice, video and email was first time used in computers. He will be greatly remembered for development of iMac, iPod, iTunes, iPad and iPhone. These devices use software that transfer photos, music, video, games, email, contact information, calendars and web bookmarks which support computer services. This development has led to the rapid growth of digital technologies.
Moore’s Law states that the number of transistors on an integrated circuit doubles after every two years. I believe in this law due to the fact that there is high demand of the processing speed as the technological production increases. This means that the higher the speed, the higher the number of transistors in the integrated chips. This has led to integrated chips getting smaller and thinner with faster processing speed, higher memory capacity, quality sensors and even more increased size and number of pixels in a digital camera.
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