(Descartes; 02-03; p.3)
Two hundred years on, natural sciences had been
established; limits lay mainly in the relatively modest possibilities
to gain (exact) measurements and to calculate and visualise relations
with a large number of elements.
The latter had been tried to overcome by mechanising
pre-defined steps of calculations since roughly the 1850s. ( A
small and surely incomplete history
of computing is found here.) To name are the Analytical Machine
of the Briton Charles Babbage as well as the efforts and concepts
of his compatriots Ada Lovelace and George Boole to programme
such a machine.
Still one hundred years later, the Briton Alan
Mathison Turing and the American-by-choice John von Neumann eventually
developed concepts for machines that could solve any problem,
provided that it would be translatable into a formula.
Not 25 years onward and American computer scientists
and engineers constructed the first "computers", i.e.
machines consisting of electronic Integrated Circuits - the original
model of today's "chips" -, input-, screen- and output-devices.
Eventually, in the 1980s the "chip and data-processing revolution"
gathered pace, i.e. it became possible to produce affordable chips
en masse and programmes have been created since that put Turing's
and his predecessor's concepts into practice. (read