On This Day
1822 – Charles Babbage proposes a difference engine in a paper to the Royal Astronomical Society entitled “Note on the application of machinery to the computation of astronomical and mathematical tables”.
A difference engine is an automatic mechanical calculator designed to tabulate polynomial functions. The name derives from the method of divided differences, a way to interpolate or tabulate functions by using a small set of polynomial coefficients. Most mathematical functions commonly used by engineers, scientists and navigators, including logarithmic and trigonometric functions, can be approximated by polynomials, so a difference engine can compute many useful tables of numbers.
The historical difficulty in producing error-free tables by teams of mathematicians and human “computers” spurred Charles Babbage’s desire to build a mechanism to automate the process.
Born On This Day
1900 – Ruth Nanda Anshen, American writer, editor, and philosopher (d. 2003)
Ruth Nanda Anshen (June 14, 1900 – December 2, 2003) was an American philosopher, author and editor. She was the author of several books including The Anatomy of Evil, Biography of An Idea, Morals Equals Manners and The Mystery of Consciousness: A Prescription for Human Survival.
Read more ->
By Adam Clark Estes: The Very Best Beginner Drone
By Patrick Redford: Pair Of Port-A-Potties Departs This Earthly Plane
By Jennings Brown: Sheriff Says Campers Burning Poop in a Hole Started 500-Plus Acre Fire
By Maggie Taylor: Radiotopia Launches ‘ZigZag’
Welcome to ZigZag, our brand new podcast about changing the course of capitalism, journalism and women in technology.
Produced by Manoush Zomorodi and Jen Poyant, formerly of Note to Self, and in partnership with Civil, the show is a first-hand account of their experiences quitting salaried jobs in public radio to co-found a media company.
The Passive Voice: The Passive Voice – Words-to-be-read are losing ground to words-to-be-heard, a new stage of digital content evolution
By Sean Hayes, Tenor: 31st anniversary of the GIF: give your terminal some personality with Tenor GIF for CLI
By Melissa Patrick: People with positive attitudes about aging likely to live longer, have better health; rural populations tend to be older
By Jared Newman: Amazon’s Ring Alarm security system undercuts Nest and ADT
Ducks eating watermelon is one of the strangest things you’ll ever see (Video)
Dad and baby jump in to help a nervous ballerina (Video)
Debbie HometalkerGlen Mills, PA: Pretty Sliding Barn Door. It Slides Behind a Dresser.
By Kara S. Hometalker Jersey City, NJ: Custom Stained Glass
Andrew @ ScrappyGeek.com Hometalker Enfield, NH: We Built Steps on a Slope
By bekathwia: Free Online Jewelry Class
By Jessyratfink: How to Repot Container Plants
By Licheness: Ziplock Toilet Paper Dispenser – Camping and Canoeing
By Techgenie: How to Fix Any Remote at Home
Widget not in any sidebars