Digital Logic and Computer Design
Electronic Brains The modem computers are capable of such fantastic feats that these have often been termed as electronic brains, but these cannot be called intelligent in the human sense. Their ‘brains’ are not capable of thinking like a human brain. In fact, these sophisticated machines can only do what they are commanded to.
The Digital Computer
Most common among the computers, the digital computers, are universal in the sense that these have applications not only in the scientific field but also in the fields of business and administration. In fact, due to their flexibility and accuracy, today, the digital computers dominate the scene. The latest of these computers are called microcomputers which are handy and user-friendly.
If we look at the origin of the most revolutionary invention of the modem age, known as Computer, then we would have to go back to 17th century. Interestingly, the origins of the mechanical digital calculators can be traced to the mathematicians Blaise Pascal (1623-62) and Gotffried Wilhelm Liebnitz (1646-1716). Charles Babbage (1792-1871) was the first to think of the machine to produce and store the tables of logarithms invented by John Napier (1550-1617). First, he designed a difference engine and later, an analytical engine, an all-purpose calculating machine. But, despite his best efforts, the usage of all his resources and a substantial British Government subsidy, success eluded him.