Sunday, November 10, 2002

More computer trivia!

When was a computer first used to predict a presidential election?

When did Silicon Valley get its start?

When was the first high level computer language introduced?


CBS-TV used a UNIVAC to successfully predict the 1952 presidential
election. (I remember that!)

William Shockley* opened his semiconductor laboratory in 1955,
ushering in the semiconductor business in “Silicon Valley”.

The computer language FORTRAN was introduced in 1957. (Several
web sites indicate it was created in 1956 & 1954**.)

*The controversial William Shockley was one of three scientists at
Bell Telephone Laboratories, including Walter Brattain and John
Bardeen, who demonstrated the point-contact transistor amplifier
(1947). In the 1970s, Shockley shocked Americans with his comments
that racial differences in intelligence tests were based on heredity.

FYI Grace Murray Hopper (Adm., US Navy) invented Cobol in 1959 and
also discovered the first computer bug (A moth stuck in a relay).
Source: *The Information Please Almanac 1994

Ted Perzeszty