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How Aristotle Created the Computer


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Aristotle's Organon set forth logial structure, schema, and laws.

Modern computers would not exist without the influence of Aristotelean principles.

Credit: Wikimedia/donatas1205/Billion Photos/vgeny Karandaev/The Atlantic

Modern computers would not exist without the influence of Aristotelean principles.

For example, philosopher-mathematician George Boole credited Aristotle's Organon, which set forth logical structure, schema, and laws, for inspiring his work, "Laws of Thought," to give Aristotelean logic a precise algebraic notation.

Claude Shannon built on Boole's work to propose a governing systematic theory for the design of electrical circuits, and a framework for building arithmetical logic units.

Alan Turing later developed a template for computer design based on mathematical logic in an attempt to find an algorithm that solved the "decision problem" for determining the truth or falsehood of an arbitrary mathematical statement. The revelation that such an algorithm could not exist led to a mathematical model of an all-purpose computing machine, and later evidence of how a program could be stored within a computer alongside the data upon which it operates.

From The Atlantic
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