Who invented EDVAC?

Category: Computers

The EDVAC, also known as Electronic Discrete Variable Automatic Computer, was invented by John Presper Eckert and John William Mauchly in the year 1946, who were also the inventors of ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer). John Presper Eckert was an electrical engineer and computer pioneer who was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. John Mauchly was a popular American physicist from Cincinnati, Ohio.

EDVAC was one among the earliest electronic computers invented. It was perhaps the first device with binary system and it was a stored program device. EDVAC used the binary numeral system unlike its predecessor, the ENIAC which used the decimal numeral system. EDVAC could perform operations such as automatic subtraction, addition, programmed division, multiplication and automatic checking. It had a memory of 1000 words capacity and this was later improved to 1024 words.

The computer was made with components that included a control unit with an oscilloscope and a magnetic tape reader-recorder. It also had a dispatcher unit that received the instructions from the memory and control unit and directed them to other units. The arithmetic operations were performed by a computational unit which sent the results to the memory after verification by another unit.

Physically EDVAC had about 12,000 diodes and 6,000 vacuum tubes and the power consumption was 56 KW. It occupied 490 square feet of floor area and weighed 17,300 lbs. EDVAC was later replaced by BRLERSC, also known as the Ballistic Research Laboratories Electronic Scientific Computer in 1961.

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