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People who performed the computations were known then as computers. However, this name came to be used later as a name of machines that did the calculations instead. In the years between 1940 and 1950, electronic devices were developed to perform computations (Frauenfelder, 633). The computation machines were the first computers to be developed and their size was as big as a room. Their processing power and speed was much slower.
The design of these first computers was however developed in 1837 by Charles Babbage. However, he only developed a mechanical analytical engine and lacked the finances and mechanisms. Hi son, Henry completed the work and made a simplified it into a computing unit. Accuracy, speed, and mathematical calculations became really essential during the World War II when understanding enemy directions and weapon strength became a great necessity. Without an advanced machine, this was not to be possible. The Moore School of Engineering developed the first computer for the US Army in 1946. This computer, called ENIAC produced the firing tables and calculated more accurately for the army.
The ENIAC cost the US government $US 400, 000 to build. It weighed 30 tones. What is most interesting is that the computer stood more than twenty feet tall. However, the speed of this machine was remarkable, being able to perform close to 500 calculations in one second. Nevertheless, the computer had difficulties handling alphabetic information. The machine also lacked a system to store messages and computations. This implied that moving the machine seemed more like rewriting the whole system. A power loss would also have a similar effect on the machine. This lack of memory was one of the major flaws of this computer (Allan, 237).
The second computer generation began in 1959. This was the time when commercially developed transistors became available for use in the industries. The
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