## Charles Babbage on the Principles and Development of the Calculator: And Other Seminal WritingsRegarded as a crackpot by his contemporaries and a genius by modern scientists, Charles Babbage (1792–1871) was the true discoverer of the principles on which all modern computing machines are based. His achievements have been virtually forgotten, but this compilation of his writings, in addition to those of several of his contemporaries, illuminates his pioneering work. Part I consists of selections from Babbage's long-out-of-print autobiography, Passages from the Life of a Philosopher, in which he recounts the pursuit of his dreams and remarks on noteworthy acquaintances, including Laplace, Biot, Humboldt, and Sir Humphry Davy. Additional features include articles, sketches, and letters by Babbage himself along with notes by his contemporaries that explain the principles and operation of the inventor's brilliant — but never completed — calculating machines. An informative Introduction places these writings in their historical context. |

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### Contents

Preface | 5 |

Experience by Fire | 92 |

Picking Locks and Deciphering | 102 |

Copyright | |

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action addition algebraical amongst Analytical Engine angular velocity appear arithmetical arrangement astronomical axes axis Babbage's Board of Longitude bolt Bridgewater Treatise calculating engine Cannon pinion cards carriage CHAPTER CHARLES BABBAGE coefficients column combinations commencement computation considerable construction contrivances course cycle dial Difference Engine difficulty digits disc division drawings equations error executed explained expressed extent figure wheels formula function given number indicated invention Jacquard loom labour letter lever logarithms machine manner mathematical mathematician means mechanical notation Menabrea method method of differences motion move multiplication nature Nautical Almanac necessary Note numerical tables observed obtained occulting light occurred Operation-cards operations pass performed Philosopher piece places of figures possible powers principle printed produced proposed purpose quantities remarkable rendered represented rows Royal Society signs subtraction successive suppose tabular number term thaumatrope tion trigonometrical tables turn Variable Variable-cards various whole