Imperial College

Department of Mathematics

The Early History of Modern Computing


In the old days every program had to be written in machine code- making it almost impossible for anyone except an expert to write a program. And, even for experts, it was a very tedious business.
One of the great breakthroughs came with the advent of 'high level' languages and computer programs which would accept a program written in the high level language and convert it into a machine executable program.
In the UK the one of the first - if not the first- high level language was Tony Brooker's Autocode.

Tony graduated from the Mathematics Department in 1945 and went on to take a major part in building the first 'public domain' digital computer- the Imperial College Computing Engine.

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