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© 2010

Technology for Modelling

Electrical Analogies, Engineering Practice, and the Development of Analogue Computing

  • Suggests a new interpretation of the history of analogue computing, taking into account how the technology has been used and applied

  • Demonstrates how the history of analogue computing can be understood in terms of the two parallel themes of calculation and modelling, and describes how the technology evolved

  • Includes a number of detailed case studies examining analogue modelling in academic research, oil reservoir modelling, aeronautical design, and meteorology

Book

Part of the History of Computing book series (HC)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XVIII
  2. Modelling, Calculation and Analogy: The Themes of Analogue Computing

  3. Analogue Computing in Use: A Selection of Contexts

  4. Back Matter
    Pages 185-209

About this book

Introduction

Historians have different views on the core identity of analogue computing. Some portray the technology solely as a precursor to digital computing, whereas others stress that analogue applications existed well after 1940. Even within contemporary sources, there is a spectrum of understanding around what constitutes analogue computing. To understand the relationship between analogue and digital computing, and what this means for users today, the history must consider how the technology is used.

Technology for Modelling investigates the technologies, the concepts, and the applications of analogue computing. The text asserts that analogue computing must be thought of as not just a computing technology, but also as a modelling technology, demonstrating how the history of analogue computing can be understood in terms of the parallel themes of calculation and modelling. The book also includes a number of detailed case studies of the technology's use and application.

Topics and features:

  • Discusses the meaning of analogue computing and its significance in history, and describes the main differences between analogue and digital computing
  • Provides a chronology of analogue computing, based upon the two major strands of calculation and modeling
  • Examines the wider relationship between computing and modelling, and discusses how the theme of modelling fits within the history of analogue computing
  • Describes how the history of analogue computing evolved through a number of stages of use
  • Presents illustrative case studies on analogue modelling in academic research, oil reservoir modelling, aeronautical design, and meteorology

General readers and researchers in the field of history of computing - as well as history of science more generally - will find this book a fascinating insight into the historical use and evolution of technology. The volume provides a long-needed historical framework and context for these core computing technologies.

Dr. Charles Care is a senior software engineer at BT and an Associate Fellow at the Department of Computer Science of the University of Warwick, UK.

Keywords

Analog Computing History of Computing Reservoir computer modeling university

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. Computer ScienceUniversity of WarwickCoventryUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Technology for Modelling
  • Book Subtitle Electrical Analogies, Engineering Practice, and the Development of Analogue Computing
  • Authors Charles Care
  • Series Title History of Computing
  • Series Abbreviated Title History of Computing
  • DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-84882-948-0
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag London Limited 2010
  • Publisher Name Springer, London
  • eBook Packages Computer Science Computer Science (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-84882-947-3
  • Softcover ISBN 978-1-4471-2573-0
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-84882-948-0
  • Series ISSN 2190-6831
  • Series E-ISSN 2190-684X
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XVIII, 203
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics History of Computing
    Simulation and Modeling
  • Buy this book on publisher's site

Reviews

From the reviews:

“Care’s book looks at the history, technologies, concepts, and applications of analog computing. … chapters provide a very good historical perspective on the subject. … nicely summarizes Care’s main themes. The book includes a detailed table of contents, a list of relevant acronyms, a comprehensive list of references, and a short index. It is an invaluable addition to the library of anyone interested in the history of analog computing and modeling.” (David B. Henderson, ACM Computing Reviews, November, 2010)