Minding machines

For all the astounding variety of machinery inhabiting the planet today, the range of human responses to them is remarkably limited. Reactions to machinic ubiquity fall into two broad camps. The first is to essentially ignore them. When historian Siegfried Giedion, in the 1940s, wrote his history of machines, tools, and furniture in the 18th … Continue reading Minding machines

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Ternary telegraphy

A while back, we looked at ternary computing; that is, computers using three values (+1, 0, and -1) instead of two (1 and 0). This does make arithmetic a bit more complicated but also helps store more information: a bit can store one of two values, but a trit stores one of three. The trit … Continue reading Ternary telegraphy

Does assembler math have a history? Part 4

Last week we've described how the basic entities of assembly - in this case a string - come in three layers. They don't have a history on the most abstract one, where they're just input, output, or intermediary state. They do have history on the most concrete one, though, where it matters whether a string … Continue reading Does assembler math have a history? Part 4

Does assembler math have a history? Part 3

Last time we looked at the history of algorithms to see if assembler math can have a history as far as its operations are concerned, and we decided it does. Now it's time to look at the entities being compiled - say, strings, arithmetic variables, GOTO commands and loops, command lines and parsing, and so … Continue reading Does assembler math have a history? Part 3

Does Assembler Math have a history? Part 2

Following up on two weeks ago, we've now established that the math behind assembly can have a history in two ways: either in the elements to be assembled, or in the operations when going about doing so. Today we'll take a look at the second of these two: the operations going into assembly. You'll probably … Continue reading Does Assembler Math have a history? Part 2