Computers During WWII

862 Words 4 Pages
In the height of WWII, the Germans used heavy artillery and unique tactics to dominate their opponents. The Allies attempted to counter them by any means necessary, but it wasn’t until in the middle of the war did the concept of the potential of computers hit them. Scientist soon found out about the computer’s ability to compute firing tables, break code, and communicate between relay stations. At the beginning of WWII, the first all-electric computer was invented by Professor John Atanasoff and his student Clifford Berry. The machine was called ABC. The ABC had been designed to solve sets of linear differential equations. It was as large as a desk and included 300 electronic tubes as switches and a 1,600 capacitor memory, but also had electromechanical …show more content…
In Great Britain, scientists had to figure out a way to break the German code-making machine, the Enigma. With the Enigma, the Germans were able to communicate freely with each other without being worried about their code being broken. After several tries by human computers, the British government decided to implement an operation called project Ultra. Led by Alan Turing, a group of brilliant engineers located in Bletchley Park started working on creating a computer that code try all possible combinations of words in order to break the Enigma. After four years, the team was able to create the Colossus, a digital electronic computer based off the Mark I. With its sole purpose being to break the Enigma code, the Colossus changed the tide of the war. The discovery remained top secret and the documents had to be destroyed until they were uncovered many decades later. Yet this enormous machine proved that computers revealed limitless …show more content…
German engineer Konrad Zuse, one of the world’s leading computer designer, managed to create a binary electromechanical computer known as the Z2. Although initially drafted as a German soldier, the Germans saw potential in Zuse and recruited him to be a German engineer. With the previous model Z1 being purely mechanical, the Z2 was the first operational programmable computer. This computer incorporated the binary system, yet on of its downside was that it was slow. His plan to compensate this flaw was to use vacuum tubes to speed it up. But since this would take two years, the German government said no thinking that the war would be over in two years. Yet the war lasted a lot longer which makes you think if Zuse was given the opportunity to finish his design, maybe the outcome of the war would have been different. After the war, Zuse soon evolved his designs and created the Z3 and Z4 which was a colossal improvement over its predecessor. But these machines weren’t used for the war since the Germans overlooked him, thinking that the key to winning the war was through weapons and

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