This December 26 marks 228 years of the birth in 1791 of the British mathematician Charles Babbage, considered the father of the computer when conceiving the first mechanical calculation device.
His idea was to mechanically eliminate errors due to fatigue or boredom suffered by people responsible for compiling the mathematical tables of the time.
Before the Royal Astronomical Society, Babbage presented in 1822 the principles of a calculating machine – which he called ‘Difference machine’– in order to apply it to the operation and printing of mathematical tables. He also designed a physical plan of a couple of gadgets for that purpose.
– In these six quotes the thought of Babbage is condensed:
- “As soon as there is an Analytical Machine, it will necessarily guide the future course of science.”
- “The mistakes made using inappropriate data are much smaller than those made by not using data at all.”
- “The difference between a tool and a machine is not very precise; nor is it necessary, in a popular explanation of those terms, to strictly limit their acceptance. ”
- “The economy of human time is the next advantage of manufacturing machinery.”
- “In each increase in knowledge, as well as in the invention of each new tool, human work is abbreviated.”
- “For a person blessed with the power of the invention, there will always be many who have the ability to apply principles.” Ep