Cybernetics

July 8, 2016

First Interactions: The Beginning of an Influential Career

Filed under: Breadcrumbs — Bricoleur @ 8:33 pm

I continue to learn from Jerry years after first ‘tasting the strawberry jam’ …. thanks https://swalchemist.wordpress.com. for this article

swalchemist

My friend Jerry Weinberg was present at the dawn of the age of computers. He can describe first-hand what that was like, but much of his story has never been told. I have started to collect Jerry’s stories. Here is a small sampling, which I prompted by asking him “What were your first interactions with a computing device?”

The first thing that Jerry used that we could call a computing device is a slide rule that his father, Harry, gave him when he was about 7 years old. Harry worked for more than 20 years helping to improve processes at Sears, Roebuck & Co. He bought slide rules in quantity to give to the young ladies who computed customer bills. They used slide rules to check their multiplication, for example, when multiplying price times quantity. This practice caught an enormous number of errors before the bills were sent to customers.

Jerry had a more interesting use for his slide rule, though. He…

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