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Jacquard's web : how a hand-loom led to the birth of the information age

Author: James Essinger
Publisher: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2004.
Edition/Format:   Book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Examines how the Jacquard loom kick-started a process of scientific evolution which would lead directly to the development of the modern computer. The invention of Jacquard's loom in 1804 enabled the master silk-weavers of Lyons to weave fabrics 25 times faster than had previously been possible. The device used punched cards, which stored instructions for weaving whatever pattern or design was required. These cards  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: James Essinger
ISBN: 0192805770 9780192805775
OCLC Number: 56652403
Description: xi, 302 p. : ill., ports. ; 20 cm.
Contents: The engraving that wasn't --
A better mousetrap --
The son of a master-weaver --
The Emperor's new clothes --
From weaving to computing --
The difference engine --
The analytical engine --
A question of faith and funding --
The lady who loved the Jacquard loom --
A crisis with the American census --
The first Jacquard looms that wove information --
The birth of IBM --
The Thomas Watson phenomenon --
Howard Aiken dreams of a computer --
IBM and the Harvard Mark I --
Weaving at the speed of light --
The future.
Responsibility: by James Essinger.
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Abstract:

In this tale James Essinger shows through a series of historical connections (spanning two centuries and never investigated before) that the Jacquard loom kick-started a process of scientific  Read more...

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An entertaining and illuminating exercise in making connections between apparently disparate scientific endeavours. TLS

 
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