What was the largest electronic computer
Machinery with a future
Back then, computers filled huge halls and weighed tons. We look back at the age of the mainframe, when a computer was still a long way off for everyone.
The size and enormous weight of the computers was mainly due to the still very bulky technology. Switching processes that take place today in miniaturized chips the size of a two-euro coin were carried out around 60 years ago in huge relays and electron tube systems.
The mainframe computers looked like the machines and control units in old science fiction films, in which giant calculators with countless switches and endlessly flashing rows of lights rattle in front of them.
Arithmetic for war
"War is the father of all things." The winged word Heraclitus seems to apply especially to the computer. From the beginning, the military usability of computers has been one of the main driving forces behind computer development. During the First World War, punch card computers took on important logistical tasks, for example in the manufacture of ammunition or food distribution.
The first electronic mainframe computers, on the other hand, were used for ballistic calculations in order to determine the trajectories of projectiles as precisely as possible. In peacetime, the computers were then also switched to peacetime economy.
Mainframes now took over tasks of mass processing of data that were previously intended for punch card machines, such as the organization of wages and salaries, personnel structures and company accounting. It was always about optimizing operational processes, increasing efficiency and saving costs.
Zuse and other pioneers
Computer experts at the time were highly specialized professionals, of whom there were only a handful in the world. One of the most famous computer pioneers is the German Konrad Zuse.
In 1941 he built the world's first program-controlled computer called the Z3. Zuse worked in Berlin during the turmoil of the war, completely single-handedly, without any exchange with specialists or engineers.
His pioneering work can therefore not be overestimated. A whole range of other model series followed. In Karlsruhe, in the Center for Art and Media Technology (ZKM), there is an original Z22, the only fully functional Zuse in the world that still calculates regularly thanks to loving maintenance.
Gigantic with 17,000 tubes
The name ENIAC has also long been a legend. The ENIAC computer (short for Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer) was built by J. Presper Eckert and John W. Mauchly on behalf of the US Army from 1942. The large computer measured ten by 17 meters and weighed 27 tons. At that time, the ENIAC computer alone had over 17,000 electron tubes, each of which had to be kept operational during a calculation.
History was also made by the Mark I computer, designed in the USA between 1943 and 1944 by Howard H. Aiken of Harvard University, with a weight of 35 tons and a front length of 16 meters.
A project from 1996 shows how spectacular the development of computer technology has been since the age of mainframes: A team of computer science students from Pennsylvania University in Philadelphia (USA) banned the entire computing capacity of ENIAC in the project "ENIAC on a Chip" on a single chip that was just six by six millimeters!
Status: 23.07.2019, 4:15 p.m.
- Who is the best cardiologist in London
- Are you motivated from inside or outside?
- Eating killer whales baleen whales
- Which is better RTU or MBM
- Who is the owner of Dropbox
- What is the importance of the public media
- Could Pangea actually exist?
- Where can I learn Octave GUI
- Chinese tourists use WeChat in Europe
- What is the best rockabilly guitar
- What are your favorite languages
- What does cheap thinking mean
- Which means that the Comcast internet is slow
- What is UConn best known for
- Which free antivirus actually removes viruses?
- OneCoin will be the next after Bitcoin
- What is CRM for financial services
- DNB Obstetrics Gynecology is a great option
- Where are the Nandi hills
- What is racism and what is not
- A virus can cause neurological symptoms
- How do I develop a firewall
- What is the rarest Saab car
- How often do you visit religious places