Computer History for Geeks
The UNIVAC 1 used vacuum tubes to do binary calculations.


In 1951, along with their own computer company, the inventors of the ENIAC designed their most famous computer, the UNIVAC 1.

The UNIVAC 1 became famous when it appeared on television. It predicted—correctly—that Dwight Eisenhower would win the presidential election over Adlai Stevenson.

UNIVAC is the acronym for "Universal Automatic Computer." It weighed 16,000 pounds and had 5,000 vacuum tubes. Not something you'd want to take home with you.

From UNIVAC to home computers

In 1947, a new device called a transistor gave computers a much better way to keep track of zeroes and ones, eliminating the need for vacuum tubes, and allowing them to take up less space.

A little less than 25 years later, in 1971, the microprocessor was invented, making the personal computer possible.

The road to modern computers was built by many famous people.

What does ENIAC stand for?

Entry Number Install And Compute

Early Number Idea And Computer

ENIAC- its not an acronym

Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer

Microprocessors contain transistors—millions of them! The first micro-processing chip was one-eighth inch by 1/16th inch. All by itself, it was as powerful as ENIAC!

In 1975 Micro Instrumentation Telemetry Systems (MITS) created the first home computer that people would actually go out and buy. They called it the Altair.

It didn't take long for others to follow. By the late 1970s, several personal computers were available for home use.

People quickly discovered how a home computer could make their lives better.

Calling all girl geeks.

From home computers to...

The future of computers is hard to predict.

Computers of the future will be smaller, faster, and more powerful. Already you might have a computerized device in every room in your house.

True or False: The first ever assassination attempt made against a United States President was intended for Andrew Jackson. Click Andrew's head for the answer.
TRUE: Richard Lawrence was mentally ill. He tried to shoot Jackson with two pistols from point-blank range. Both misfired. Jackson then beat Lawrence with his cane.
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