A Century of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, 1882-1982
Electrical engineering is a protean profession. Today the field embraces manydisciplines that seem far removed from its roots in the telegraph, telephone, electric lamps,motors, and generators. To a remarkable extent, this chronicle of change and growth at a singleinstitution is a capsule history of the discipline and profession of electrical engineering as itdeveloped worldwide. Even when MIT was not leading the way, the department was usually quick toadapt to changing needs, goals, curricula, and research programs. What has remained constantthroughout is the dynamic interaction of teaching and research, flexibility of administration, theinterconnections with industrial progress and national priorities.The book's text and manyphotographs introduce readers to the renowned teachers and researchers who are still well known inengineering circles, among them: Vannevar Bush, Harold Hazen, Edward Bowles, Gordon Brown, HaroldEdgerton, Ernst Guillemin, Arthur von Hippel, and Jay Forrester.The book covers the department'smajor areas of activity - electrical power systems, servomechanisms, circuit theory, communicationstheory, radar and microwaves (developed first at the famed Radiation Laboratory during World WarII), insulation and dielectrics, electronics, acoustics, and computation. This rich history ofaccomplishments shows moreover that years before "Computer Science" was added to the department'sname such pioneering results in computation and control as Vannevar Bush's Differential Analyzer,early cybernetic devices and numerically controlled servomechanisms, the Whirlwind computer, and theevolution of time-sharing computation had already been achieved.Karl Wildes has been associated withthe Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science since the 1920s, and is now ProfessorEmeritus. Nilo Lindgren, an electrical engineering graduate of MIT and professional scientific andtechnical journalist for many years, is at present affiliated with the Electric Power ResŤarchInstitute in Palo Alto, California.
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