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Charles Babbage, British mathematician

Charles Babbage, British mathematician

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SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Charles Babbage (1792-1871), British mathematician and professor at Cambridge, coloured artwork. He is a founding father of computer science. He worked on the theory of functions and algebra, and invented an ophthalmoscope. In 1833 he produced a difference engine, a mechanical device to compile logarithms. He began designing an analytical engine that would be capable of executing any sequence of arithmetic instructions. It was to use punched cards and possess a memory for holding results. Lady Ada Lovelace (Lord Byron's daughter) helped in the design. However, funds ran out and the machine was not completed. Babbage's work used many principles now used in modern computing.

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