1837: The Analytical Engine

While working on the Difference Engine, Babbage had a better idea for a machine that could calculate anything – not just numbers for mathematical tables. The Analytical Engine was composed of a store (equivalent to memory in a modern computer) and a mill (like a CPU in a  modern computer). Inspired by the textile industry, Babbage proposed using punch cards to feed instructions into the engine’s steam-powered mill. The engine was designed to add, subtract, multiply, and compare, but it was never built.

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