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Document Details


Title: Arthur W. and Alice R. Burks
Local code: OH 75
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. Charles Babbage Institute
Collection: Charles Babbage Institute Oral History Program
Description: Arthur Burks describes his work on the ENIAC and Institute for Advanced Study computers. He reviews his upbringing, education, and work experiences (mainly teaching) before joining the University of Pennsylvania Moore School of Electrical Engineering in 1941. He then discusses his associations with J. Presper Eckert, John Mauchly, John Brainerd, Herman Goldstine, and others and their work at the Moore School. Various aspects of the ENIAC project are discussed in detail: interactions of project members, division of tasks, decision making processes, patenting issues, initial operation, and von Neumann's association with the Moore School and the ENIAC and EDVAC projects. There is a general discussion concerning the classification of general versus special purpose computers and computers versus calculators. Patenting issues concerning the ENIAC project are given particular attention. The Burkses discuss the dispersion of ENIAC and EDVAC personnel at the end of World War II. Burks recounts his move to the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, his experiences there, and his consulting work with Burroughs prior to accepting a faculty position at the University of Michigan.
Extent: 109 pages
URL: http://www.cbi.umn.edu/oh/pdf.phtml?id=74
Original Language: English
Time span: Not indicated ... to 1980 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Burks, Alice R.
Speaker gender: Female
Document location: Ann Arbor, MI
Document date: 20-Jun-1980
Interviewer: Stern, Nancy
Locations discussed: North America; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: Computer software; Electric engineering; Engineering; Information technology; North America; Oral history; Software engineering; United States
Topics discussed - Other terms: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0023914-25450