Planning and Coding

  • Mark PriestleyEmail author
Part of the SpringerBriefs in History of Computing book series (BRIEFSHC)


Both the meshing routine code and the process that von Neumann used to develop it were important foundations for the series of reports on Planning and Coding of Problems for an Electronic Computing Instrument that he wrote with Herman Goldstine. This chapter describes the transition from EDVAC to the early plans and code for the computer project started at the Institute for Advanced Study. Examination of a little-known 1946 draft of the Planning and Coding reports illuminates the development of key ideas such as the use of flow diagrams to document program structure and the use of subroutines in programming. These reports also contain later versions of the meshing routine, and also the earliest surviving version of a sorting routine using the mergesort algorithm.


John von Neumann Herman Goldstine Planning and coding reports Flow diagrams Institute for advanced study computer Mergesort program Subroutines 

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Freelance Writer and Historian of ComputingLondonUK

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