Friday, September 24

Grandma COBOL, some others and I

Yesterday, through Twitter, I became aware of and the article about "The People Behind the Code: Famous Programmers Who Have Influenced Computer Programming".
In the overview I did not find one of my heroes: Grace Hopper who conceptualized the idea of machine-independent programming languages, which led to the development of COBOL, one of the first modern programming languages. I wrote my first Data-program in Machine Code during my military service in 1967 and touched upon the basics of BASIC and FORTRAN IV, but it was through COBOL I developed my computer skills in the 1970s. Some of my best and most important COBOL programs were still in operation late 80s.
G.Hopper is also credited with popularizing the term "debugging" for fixing computer glitches (motivated by an actual moth removed from the computer or in a program).Debugging became one of my main activities from 1973 to 1976 when I acted as an Oracle or support consultant / help-desk for customers using our computers like Univac 1108.For those of you not interested in nostalgic memories from a "minor pioneer" in the computing business in Norway, maybe the photo above (from the Sherweb article) is more relevant.
Tim Berners-Lee (left) invented what we know as the World Wide Web with the help of Robert Cailliau (right) and others at the nuclear physics laboratory Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucleaire (CERN). Berners-Lee first proposed the “WorldWideWeb” project in 1989. He and his team are credited with inventing the original HTTP protocol along with the HTML and other associated technology for a web server and a text-based web browser. On December 25, 1990, with the help of Cailliau, they implemented the first successful communication between an HTTP client and server via the Internet. Merry Christmas!
My family and I started to use the Web in 1994 when we stayed in Singapore, and have been active out there ever since.
Sir Arthur C. Clarke ( famous for the novel 2001: A space Odyssey) predicted in Popular Science in May 1970 that satellites would one day "bring the accumulated knowledge of the world to our fingertips" using an office console that would combine the functionality of the xerox, telephone, TV and a small computer so as to allow both data transfer and video conferencing around the globe."
Some of us were working with the term TeleData in mid 80s.
Today I am using iPhone 4.


Anne said...

Oj, våken tidlig du er da?? trodde litt av stasen med pensjonist tilværelsen var å sove litt lenger jeg??

9na said...

Morsom historikk..., vi var faktisk også blant pionerene på internett med en diger greie av en datamaskin som tok halve soverommet der vi bodde i en liten leilighet. Anders minstemann lærte som baby å si "skkkkkrtsjjjgadonggadooong" = lyden av oppkobling av modemet...