1837 Babbage calculating machine universe

1837 Babbage calculating machine universe

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Caption: The Ninth Bridgewater Treatise by Charles Babbage 1837. Published London by John Murray. His remarkable reply to the eight Bridgewater Treatises - specifically that of Whewell. Babbage on this frontis references an inflamatory comment condeming maths by William Whewell which, to Babbage as a mathematician, could not be allowed to pass unchallenged. In twelve chapters Babbage here attempts to demonstrate that mathemetics are God's "administration of the Universe'. In so doing he presents God as a divine programmer who had set in motion a mighty law-driven sequence of events far more impressive than an ad hoc miracle driven universe. Babbage often draws his arguments and illustrations entirely from his famous calculating-engine, clearly seeing a similarity between its mathematical machinations and that of the Universe.

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Keywords: babbage, bridgewater treatise, calculating, charles, computer, computing, early, first, god, koestler, machine, mathematician, mathematics, ninth, programming, religion, science, universe, whewell

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