Thread: Augusta Byron

  1. #1
    Its hard... But im here swgh's Avatar
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    Apr 2005

    Augusta Byron

    Hopefully the title of the thread should be a person we all know in our fields.

    My question is a strange one, but I really want to get some of your thoughts on the subject. Augusta Byron (more commonly referred to as Ada Lovelace) is regarded as the world's first computer programmer. We all know she worked along side Charles Babbage in the 1800s and created punch card cryptic algorithms to calculate poly-numerals, to be executed on the Analytical Engine.

    I've been to the London Science Museum and it is an amazing piece of hardware - it's massive!

    Anyway, back on topic, I was having a discussion with some of the peeps I work with and they seem to agree with many of the theo-logists of that time and even our time that she was not the first programmer - and it was somebody else. I cannot prove nor can I disprove this theory, as all we have is what history has left behind. Is their any substantial proof that she was the first programmer?

    I have seen pictures and of her Analytical Engine program and even her personal notes prove she was a total genius for that period of history. I would just like the "rumor" to rest beside her in Cyber Space.

    Double Helix STL

  2. #2
    and the hat of int overfl Salem's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
    The edge of the known universe
    Do you have any links to who "they" are?
    Do you have any links to whoever "someone else" might be?

    > I cannot prove nor can I disprove this theory
    No, the people making the extraordinary claims need to be providing the proof.
    Until then, they're just trolls.
    If you dance barefoot on the broken glass of undefined behaviour, you've got to expect the occasional cut.
    If at first you don't succeed, try writing your phone number on the exam paper.

  3. #3
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    May 2006
    Like so many other things in History, some knowledge is open for debate. You'll find that many of those questioning Lovelace contributions are Babbage scholars (*).
    You'll want to start from there.

    The truth is sort of immaterial. History declares as an historical fact that which is known at a certain point in time. And currently all that is known points to Lovelace as the first programmer. The arguments in contrary are part of the scientific process of historical knowledge and do no yet constitute evidence enough to reformulate the current knowledge. Your friends should perhaps be told that history isn't a matter of fate, but instead hard evidence. That, unless they are historians themselves and have studied these documents themselves they should play the game as spectators and not as interventionists. The world doesn't need any more armchair scientists.

    (*) Attention to the subject of the phrase. It doesn't mean that many of Babbage scholars question Lovelace contribution. They are just a minority.
    Last edited by Mario F.; 11-15-2016 at 07:04 AM.
    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

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