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The myth Artificial Intelligence is often said to have been born in the mids in the U. He has never seen anything about this in writing though. Finally, no case should ever last five or six years. Robinson, precursor to Colossus. I am scared to upset my ex as he could turn nasty and demand we sell the house. This meant that each instruction was available at exactly the moment it was required, with no delays. There are no financial issues nor were there any children involved.

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In November Womersley wrote a fascinating synopsis of the principal events that led to the establishment of the ACE project:. He now has a choice of doing nothing and waiting for his ex to make a move, or making an application to the court for an order in terms of the agreement. Length of time since last enrollment. This led to estimates that the trees were between 24, and 19, years old, [82] and hence this was taken to be the date of the last advance of the Wisconsin glaciation before its final retreat marked the end of the Pleistocene in North America. The letter connects Turing's work on morphogenesis with his interest in neural networks, and to some extent explains why he did not follow up his suggestion in 'Intelligent Machinery' and use the Ferranti computer to simulate his unorganised machines. Can I apply for an absolut before the home is sold, will this effect the charge with my home rights act.

But seemingly simple actions that people routinely perform, such as recognising a face or reading handwriting, have proved extremely difficult to program. Perhaps the networks of neurons that make up the brain have a natural facility for such tasks that standard computers lack.

Connectionism, still in its infancy, is the science of computing with networks of neurons. Researchers typically simulate the artificial neurons and their interconnections using an ordinary digital computer—just as an engineer may use a computer to simulate an aircraft wing or a weather analyst to simulate a storm system. Connectionism came to the fore in the mids, when a group based at the University of California at San Diego reported some striking experiments.

In one, an artificial neural network learned to form the past tenses of English verbs. The term 'connectionism' highlights the fact that what an artificial neural network learns is stored in its pattern of inter-neural connections. His A-type and B-type unorganised machines consist of randomly connected two-state 'neurons' whose operation is synchronised by means of a central digital clock; we call these 'Turing Nets'.

It is Turing's discussion of B-types that anticipates modern connectionism. Turing's P-type unorganised machines are not neuron-like but are modified Turing machines: It is a P-type machine that Turing was speaking of when, in the course of his famous discussion of strategies for building machines to pass the Turing test, he said 'I have done some experiments with one such child-machine, and succeeded in teaching it a few things'.

B-types too can be taught, and the most significant aspect of Turing's discussion of B-types is undoubtedly his idea that an initially random network can learn to perform a specified task by means of what he described as 'interfering training' In a B-type, the training process renders certain neural pathways effective and others ineffective—training hones the network for a specific task by selectively disabling and enabling connections.

Turing theorized that 'the cortex of the infant is an unorganised machine, which can be organised by suitable interfering training', and he described A-type unorganised machines as 'about the simplest model of a nervous system with a random arrangement of neurons'. Of Turing Nets, he said. In its treatment of learning, Turing's 'Intelligent Machinery' goes importantly beyond the famous paper on neural networks by McCulloch and Pitts. McCulloch said in What we thought we were doing and I think we succeeded fairly well was treating the brain as a Turing machine.

Turing also envisaged the procedure—nowadays used extensively by connectionists—of programming training algorithms into a computer simulation of an unorganised machine. In modern connectionism, repeated applications of a training algorithm such as the backprop or 'back propagation' algorithm cause the required pattern of connectivity to develop gradually within the network during the training phase.

Turing had no algorithm for training his B-types, however. He saw the development of training algorithms for unorganised machines as a central problem. With characteristic farsightedness Turing ended his discussion of unorganised machines by sketching the research programme that connectionists are now pursuing:. Turing was unable to pursue his research into unorganised machines very far.

At the time, the only electronic stored-program computer in existence was the tiny Manchester Baby. By the time Turing had access to the Ferranti Mark I , in , his interests had shifted and he devoted his time to modelling biological growth.

Their Cybernetic Model, constructed in , was a hardware simulation of six Boolean neurons. Clark and Farley used 'weighted' connections between neurons, as is now usual in connectionism. Clark and Farley were able to train their networks—which contained a maximum of neurons—to recognise simple patterns.

The work begun by Clark and Farley was developed very considerably by Frank Rosenblatt at Cornell University, who built neural network-like computers that he called 'Perceptrons'.

Modern connectionists regard Rosenblatt as the founding father of their approach, and it is still not widely realised that Turing wrote a blueprint for much of the connectionist project as early as The central aim of Artificial Life is a theoretical understanding of naturally-occurring biological life—in particular of the most conspicuous feature of living matter, its ability to self-organise i.

A-Life characteristically makes use of computers to simulate living and life-like systems. Christopher Langton, who coined the term 'Artificial Life', wrote. Turing was the first to use computer simulation to investigate a theory of 'morphogenesis'—the development of organisation and pattern in living things. In February Turing wrote:. Shortly before the Ferranti computer arrived, Turing wrote about his work on morphogenesis in a letter to the biologist J.

The letter connects Turing's work on morphogenesis with his interest in neural networks, and to some extent explains why he did not follow up his suggestion in 'Intelligent Machinery' and use the Ferranti computer to simulate his unorganised machines.

In June , while in the midst of this groundbreaking work, Turing died. He left a large pile of handwritten notes concerning morphogenesis, and some programs. The Manchester Computer Turing and the NPL lost the race to build the world's first stored-program electronic digital computer—an honour that went to the University of Manchester, where the 'Manchester Baby' ran its first program on 21 June As its name implies, the Baby was a very small computer, and the news that it had run what was only a tiny program—just 17 instructions long—for a mathematically trivial task was in Woodger's words 'greeted with hilarity' by Turing's group.

The Manchester computer project was the brainchild of Turing's friend and colleague Max Newman, whose section at Britain's wartime codebreaking headquarters, Bletchley Park, had contained 10 Colossus computers working around the clock to break German codes. It was in Newman's Computing Machine Laboratory that the Baby—the first real-world universal Turing machine—came to life.

It was no coincidence that as soon as the war ended Turing and Newman both embarked on projects to create a universal Turing machine in hardware. Even in the midst of the attack on Tunny , Newman was thinking about the universal Turing machine. As he said in a letter to von Neumann quoted in chapter 2 Codebreaking in World War II , it was just a question of waiting until he 'got out' of Bletchley Park.

Moreover, it had been Newman who, in a lecture in Cambridge in , had launched Turing on the research that led to the universal Turing machine. In the lecture, Newman had defined a constructive process as one that a machine can carry out. He explained in an interview. After Newman learned of Turing's universal computing machine early in , he developed an interest in computing machinery which he described as being at that time 'rather theoretical'.

It was not until his and Newman's Bletchley days that the dream of building a miraculously fast all-purpose electronic computer took hold of them. Historians who did not know of Colossus tended to assume that Turing and Newman inherited their vision of large-scale electronic computing machinery from the ENIAC group in the U. In reality, Colossus was the link between Turing's pre-war work and his and Newman's post-war projects to build an electronic stored-program computer.

Newman had laid plans for his Computing Machine Laboratory following his appointment to the Fielden Chair of Mathematics at Manchester in September His formidable talent as an organiser, honed in the Newmanry, was now brought to bear on the problem of designing and constructing an electronic stored-program computer. Newman applied to the Royal Society for a sizeable grant approved in May to develop such a machine. Parts of the Colossi were transferred from Bletchley Park to Manchester, including some of the electronic panels—although not before every indication of their original purpose had been removed!

At Bletchley, Newman had been chief executive of a project with a staff of over He initiated and oversaw the creation of a dazzling array of machines, all lying at the frontier of current technology not only the Robinsons and the Colossi—for descriptions of other Newmanry machines, see General Report on Tunny and Colossus: Newman, himself no engineer, achieved these outstanding successes by the skilful use of a simple principle: Once Newman had 'placed his trust in people he cut them loose to manage according to their own judgement' said Donald Michie, Newman's assistant at Bletchley Park.

Williams did not hear about what had gone on at Bletchley until 'we were actually active in the computer field, when they thought they had something to gain from us'. Although, since Williams and Kilburn shared the later patents and shared the royalties equally, the name 'Williams-Kilburn Tube' would be more appropriate. With his friend Patrick Blackett Langworthy Professor of Physics at Manchester and one of the most powerful figures in the University Newman had a hand in the appointment of the year-old Williams to the recently vacated Chair of Electro-Technics at Manchester.

Both Newman and Blackett were members of the appointing committee. Williams had succeeded in storing a single binary digit in the autumn of , a few weeks before he left TRE in December for the University of Manchester. The walls were of brown glazed brick and the door was labelled "Magnetism Room"'.

The first program, stored on the face of a Williams Tube as a pattern of dots, was inserted manually, digit by digit, using a panel of switches. Turing had mentioned cathode ray tube storage on page 48 of 'Proposed Electronic Calculator' , saying that this was '[m]uch the most hopeful scheme' for storage.

In effect Turing anticipated the Williams Tube in some detail, six months or more before Williams first heard of the problem of digital storage. The pattern would persist for a time, but unless a means could be found to regenerate it, the stored information would eventually disappear.

Moreover, scanning the stored pattern in order to read it also tended to destroy it. The earliest regenerative memories had used electrical capacitors as the storage units. At Bletchley Park during the war the codebreaking machine Aquarius was equipped with a regenerative memory consisting of a large bank of capacitors details were not declassified until Since the charge would gradually leak away, the pattern was regenerated by means of a periodic pulse that topped up those capacitors already containing some charge—a contemporary account described the process of regeneration as proceeding 'according to the rule "to him that hath shall be given"'.

On the other side of the Atlantic, three or four years earlier, John Atanasoff had also built a capacitor-based regenerative memory capable of storing bits, for use in his largely unsuccessful valve electronic calculator. The cathode ray tube, already in widespread use in the television industry and elsewhere, seemed in theory a better bet than the capacitor as the basis for a high-speed computer memory.

Early unsuccessful experiments with cathode ray tube storage focussed, not on the ordinary type of tube recommended by Turing and later employed by Williams, but on a more complicated type of tube called an iconoscope. The iconoscope was a light-sensitive tube used in television cameras; it converted the optical image produced by the camera lens into electricity. When the light image fell on the outside surface of a plate or 'mosaic' at the end of the iconoscope, a pattern of electrical charge was created; this pattern was read by a scanning beam of electrons inside the tube and converted into electrical current.

Instead of using light, the early storage experiments placed a pattern on the iconoscope's plate by means of the electron beam that read the pattern once stored. These experiments were carried out at the Radiation Laboratory of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the aim was to store, not digital information for use in electronic computers, but analogue information—lines and shapes—in connection with echo cancellation in radar.

The plan was to store a radar trace and then 'subtract' it from subsequent traces, so enabling the operator to see only moving objects. The problem was that storage could not be achieved for more than very short periods.

A Radiation Laboratory account dated February reported storage of a spiral pattern 'for nearly a second under suitable conditions'. Williams a leading expert on radar was shown the storage experiments during a visit to the Radiation Laboratory in June He later summed up what he saw there: Two iconoscopes were to be connected together and the stored information would be regenerated by means of continually passing it back and forth between the two tubes.

However, no method of regeneration was discovered and the experiments did not lead anywhere. The Moore School team was also interested in the two-tube method of regeneration, but the difficulty was to make the method work in practice. At the MIT Radiation Lab attempts were made to store analogue traces using the two-tube method, but these too were unsuccessful.

At TRE Williams decided to tackle the problem of digital storage. He had seen the unsuccessful attempt at digital storage by Eckert's team at the Moore School, and during his visit to the Radiation Lab had also seen the two-tube experiment aimed at analogue storage. Williams never managed to get the two-tube system to work, but during his efforts to adapt the two-tube system to digital storage he discovered the phenomenon that would make cathode ray tube storage a reality, the anticipation pulse.

In the course of his attempt to store a straight line with a gap in it—effectively one bit—on the face of the cathode ray tube, Williams observed that when the electron beam was turned off at the start of the gap, an electrically charged 'marker' was naturally left on the screen.

This advance warning—the anticipation pulse—could be used to control the regeneration of the line-plus-gap, by turning the regenerating beam off at the point where the gap began. The marker was an artefact of secondary electron emissions and the whole anticipation pulse effect was a quirk of the phosphorescent substance used to coat the face of the tube.

One off-the-shelf cathode ray tube was all that was required to make this method work, and Williams successfully stored one bit shortly after his discovery of the anticipation pulse. In the end, the anticipation pulse was not used in the Baby computer. Kilburn soon discovered other methods of regeneration. Williams and Kilburn reflected in that 'it is amazing how long it took to realize the fact that if one can read a record once, then that is entirely sufficient for storage, provided that what is read can be immediately rewritten in its original position.

Williams was sent a copy of 'Proposed Electronic Calculator' by the National Physical Laboratory in October —about the time of his discovery of the anticipation pulse October or November His words 'It will be necessary to At the time of the Baby and its successor, the Manchester Mark I, Williams and Kilburn were given too little credit by the mathematicians at Manchester. Williams and Kilburn, who had translated the logico-mathematical idea of the stored-program computer into hardware, were regarded as excellent engineers but not as 'ideas men'.

Fortunately the words of the late Freddie Williams survive to set the record straight:. Historians have either ignored or underestimated the roles played by Turing and Newman in the development of the stored-program computer at Manchester. Going by Williams' later description quoted below , Newman's explanation of the stored-program computer to Williams and Kilburn—which took place early in —resembled an account that he gave in an address to the Royal Society on 4 March and which was captured in print:.

Here Newman's explanation presents both Turing's three-address format for instructions source 1, source 2, destination, operation and also a single-address format address, operation associated with a central 'accumulator'. An accumulator is a storage unit able to form the sum of an incoming number and the number already stored; this sum then replaces the previous content of the store. From Turing's point of view, its use enabled one instruction to replace three single-address instructions, so giving greater speed.

Newman went on to describe program storage 'the orders shall be in a series of houses X 1, X 2, Colossus 'had a very characteristic feature which is sometimes taken to be the characteristic of a general computing machine; and that is, that it looks at the answer to what is done so far and does one thing if the answer is 0, say, and another thing if the answer is 1, and this is a very important step—and this step was taken in Colossus'.

In his Royal Society lecture Newman then summed up the essentials of a stored-program computer, probably in much the same words that he used when giving his 'few lectures' the previous year to the engineers:. As Williams and Kilburn described it, the basic rhythm of the Baby was 'four beats to the bar'. In the first beat, this address is transferred to the staticisor in the Princeton idiolect, the staticisor was called the 'function table register'.

The staticisor both controls the flow of information to and from the store, and controls the execution of the instructions in the program. Also in the first beat, 1 is added to the address in C.

In the second beat, the staticisor selects the line of S designated by the address received from C. An instruction consists of a single address followed by a numerical code designating an operation called the function code ; and, correspondingly, the staticisor consists of two blocks of equipment, the s-block, which accesses the store S by means of an address as just described , and the f-block, which causes the operation specified by the function code to be carried out.

In the third beat, the present instruction is fed from P. In the fourth beat, the s-block accesses the number stored in the line of S whose address appears in the instruction, and the f-block causes the operation specified by the function code to be executed—e.

After the fourth beat of the bar comes the first beat of the next bar. The diagram indicates the potential for adding a number from S to the number stored in C. Newman had explained to the engineers what they needed to build. It is also clear that the influence on Newman of Turing's paper, and of Flowers' Colossus, was crucial.

Turing's contribution to the development of Kilburn's design for the first computer has not been recognised in orthodox histories of the Manchester project. In a letter written in , Williams described in some detail what he and Kilburn were told by Newman. Williams said that this was the 'first information' that he received about the organisation of computers, although as we will explain Kilburn had in fact already received a thorough grounding in the basics of computer design in lectures given by Turing in London.

Williams said, accurately enough, that the Baby machine was an 'embodiment' of what he and Kilburn were told by Newman in the 'few lectures' that he gave them in Yet in its detailed twists and turns, the story of the coming into existence of the Baby is much more complicated than Williams' summary conveys:. The use of subtraction as the basic arithmetical operation was a clever idea that simplified the logical design of the Baby computer.

In an interview Williams explained why subtraction was chosen:. The detailed design of the Baby was largely done by Kilburn. Nevertheless, the fundamental architectural ideas embodied in the Baby were neither Kilburn's nor Williams'.

Turing's early input to the developments at Manchester, hinted at by Williams in his above-quoted reference to Turing, was via the lectures on computer design that Turing and his assistant Wilkinson gave in London during the period December to February the lecture notes are in Alan Turing's Automatic Computing Engine.

Representatives attended from various organisations that planned to use or build an electronic computer. Among the audience was Kilburn. Kilburn usually said, when asked where he got his basic knowledge of the computer from, that he could not remember ; for example, in a interview he said, 'Between early and early , in that period, somehow or other I knew what a digital computer was Where I got this knowledge from I've no idea'.

In a subsequent report written when the computer was working, Kilburn said 'I wish to acknowledge my indebtedness to Prof. Turing for much helpful discussion of the mathematical requirements of digital computing machines'. Turing was 'instrumental, with Newman, in instructing us in the basic principles of computing machines, not on the engineering side of course, on the mathematical, and we had very close collaboration with both of them'.

Turing's influence on the evolution of Kilburn's design for the Baby machine was in fact considerable. The hypothetical machine, he said, had 'the sole purpose of demonstrating the function of the storage system'. An instruction consisted of two numbers, a source number s and a destination number d , which control a source tree and a destination tree respectively.

In Kilburn's design, as in Version V of the ACE, instructions contained no 'operation code' an operation code is the code-name of a operation, for example addition.

The operation that was to be performed was implied by the destination number. The source tree accesses the number with address s in the main memory, and the destination tree accesses the destination, which is to say accesses the unit that will perform the required operation, e.

Each operand is routed from the main memory via the source tree to the destination tree. There was no central accumulator, and everything was very different from the centralised design being promulgated by von Neumann in the United States. Concerning the provenance of his design, Kilburn said rather vaguely that the design 'contain[ed] the essential framework of proposed machines'.

The explanation of how it was that by Kilburn 'somehow or other Here, in briefest outline, is the explanation that Kilburn received, during the lectures, of how to build a computer:. Certain [delay] lines are used exclusively for certain purposes For example, lines 2 and 3 are always used for addition. In order that a combination of 10 signals It is clear, then, that Turing supplied the central ideas leading to Kilburn's hypothetical machine: In an interview Kilburn said dismissively that the 'only thing' he 'got from' Turing's lectures 'was an absolute certainty that my computer wasn't going to look like that'.

Turing was Kilburn's mentor, but once Kilburn had learned all he neede, he went his own way, and his ACE-like design was in fact a dead end; it bore very little relation to the actual Baby. The Baby was a centralised machine see diagram.

All calculations were performed by transfers of numbers between the Store and the central Accumulator. Kilburn himself, in later life, was an important source of what has unfortunately become the canonical view of the roles of Turing and Newman—or rather their lack of role—in the origin of the Baby.

Although in his first papers on the Manchester computer Kilburn gave credit to both Turing and Newman, in later years he was at pains to assert the independence of his and Williams' work from outside influence, presenting the history of the Baby in a way that assigned no role to Turing or to Newman.

In an interview with Copeland in , Kilburn emphasised that Newman 'contributed nothing to the first machine' the Baby. I know it has been described by others as such—but it wasn't'. Turing's only contributions, Kilburn said, came after the computer was working, and included preparing a 'completely useless' programming manual. Another claim in the orthodox history of computing is that the Manchester computer was a wholly and uniquely British achievement—the very first modern computer, conceived and built by Kilburn, Williams and a couple of lads, in the same city that had given birth to the first industrial revolution nearly two centuries previously.

However, close study of the documentary evidence reveals the considerable extent to which the Baby was indebted to American ideas. The National Science Foundation 'family tree' of computer design 72 Click to enlarge in new window.

However, the Tree also mistakenly portrayed the ACE as an outgrowth from the same sturdy trunk. Those who drew the tree in the late s were blissfully ignorant of Colossus, and failed to recognise the other trunk on the opposite side of the Atlantic. Yet in the case of the Manchester computer, by a mixture of luck and jingoism the authors of the tree got the picture partly right. The key question is: Presper Eckert's role has already been touched upon in the sub-section The regeneration principle.

Kilburn spoke scathingly of the von Neumann 'dictat' and Geoff Tootill said:. Williams himself, however, was aware that the thinking of the Manchester engineers might have been indirectly influenced by von Neumann. In a letter, after emphasising the fact that his first knowledge of computer design came from Newman, he remarked that the information 'may have derived from America through Newman'.

Newman was eager for all the fresh ideas about computers he could gather. In the summer of he and Jack Good visited Turing at the National Physical Laboratory for several days, in order to learn as much as they could about the design of the ACE.

Good tells his own story in his chapter 'From Hut 8 to the Newmanry' of Colossus: On his return to Manchester from Princeton, Newman gave two or three lectures on computer design to Williams and Kilburn described above. Turing's lecture series had already provided Kilburn with a detailed and extended introduction to the state of the art; but Newman's emphasis on the use of a central accumulator must have opened Kilburn's eyes to the simplicity of a centralised design.

Newman's lectures inspired Good to write a few pages of notes expressing his first ideas on what the basic operations of a general-purpose computer should be. In , in his acceptance speech for the IEEE Computer Pioneer Award, Good announced that he had made a proposal for the Baby machine's basic instructions; the proposal was made 'at Kilburn's request', he said.

The set of basic operations that Good supplied to Kilburn was in fact nothing more than a simplification of the more complex set given in von Neumann's 'Preliminary Discussion of the Logical Design of an Electronic Computing Instrument'. Von Neumann had himself pointed out that the set of operations he listed could be simplified, saying 'many can be programmed by means of the others'.

Kilburn's instruction set for the Baby was a subset of Good's May instruction set. The two shift operations 9 and 10 were logically redundant, and could be dispensed with in a minimal machine as Good noted, the left shift is just multiplication by 2, and the right shift is division by 2. Good's instructions 5 , 6 and 8 were also unnecessary, since there was no arithmetic register R in the Baby.

Once Kilburn had had the idea that the only arithmetical operation should be subtraction, and had reduced Good's instruction set from 12 basic operations to 5, he knew what he needed to build: Kilburn never acknowledged a debt to Good—let alone to von Neumann—but as he himself said, 'You can't start building until you have got an instruction code'.

He did not mention Good. Kilburn did not realise that Good was in effect acting as a courier, carrying Princeton ideas to himself and Williams—or that Newman had played a similar role in his lectures. The logical design of the Baby is in fact virtually identical to a Princeton design by von Neumann and his group—a finding that places the Manchester Baby in a very new light.

From the beginning Newman's plan had been that, in order to have a computer ready for experimental work as soon as possible, 'one of the types already under construction in should be copied'. The Princeton design involved 40 memory units working in parallel. Huskey's summary of logical aspects of the Princeton design published in Alan Turing's Automatic Computing Engine makes it obvious that the design of the Baby adhered very closely to American thinking.

Aside from Kilburn's idea of using subtraction as the single basic arithmetical operation, the basic logical structure of the Baby was more or less identical to that being proposed at Princeton. Huskey wrote in The Baby's originality certainly does not lie in its logical design, but in its cathode ray tube memory and its electronic engineering. It was as electronic engineers, not computer architects, that Williams and Kilburn led the world in Just as key logical ideas flowed from Princeton to Manchester, key engineering ideas flowed in the opposite direction.

In the summer of Bigelow travelled to Manchester to see the Williams Tube memory in operation. When the Princeton computer was eventually completed in , its main memory consisted of 40 Williams Tubes.

Newman lured a 'very fed up' Turing to Manchester, where he was appointed Deputy Director of the Computing Machine Laboratory there was no Director. Once Turing arrived in Manchester he got the computer working properly, designing an input mechanism and the programming system for an expanded machine, and he wrote a programming manual.

In a letter Williams described what was, from his point of view as an engineer, Turing's 'major contribution' to the full-scale machine:. This five-hole paper tape was the daily bread of Bletchley's attack on Tunny.

So too was the five-bit teleprinter code which Turing used at Manchester to express machine-code programs in the form of keyboard characters. This input machine employed a row of photocells to read the moving teleprinter tape—technology similar to that used in Colossus and Heath Robinson. The device delivered input to the Manchester computer at the rate of five-bit characters per second, which approached the maximum that the computer was able to handle.

Turing and Newman also contributed to the instruction set of the full-scale computer. Kilburn reported that at this time Newman contributed another key idea to the plans for the full-scale computer: At Manchester Turing at last had his hands on a stored-program computer.

And while the rest of the world was just waking up to the idea that electronics was the new way to do binary arithmetic, Turing was talking very seriously about programming digital computers to think see chapter 9 Turing and Artificial Intelligence.

It was at a conference held in June to celebrate the inauguration of the EDSAC that Turing presented his early paper on what is now called program verification, 'Checking a Large Routine'. Later in came: Bureau of Standards in Washington D. The ACE of Disappointments: Womersley had himself been a member of the Interdepartmental Technical Committee that in April had recommended the creation at the NPL of a Mathematics Division whose primary objective was to 'undertake research into new computing methods and machines'.

His proposals were far-sighted at a time when no electronic computers were in existence apart from the—invisible—Colossus. The minutes of the meeting summarize his speech:. In November Womersley wrote a fascinating synopsis of the principal events that led to the establishment of the ACE project:. Persuading Turing to join the embryonic ACE project was a great coup, testifying to Womersley's vision and initiative even locating Turing, who was at that time engaged in secret work, could not have been straightforward.

Turing was even more highly qualified for the job than Womersley realised. While Womersley clearly understood the importance of Turing's pre-war article 'On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem', he was completely unaware of the highly secret developments in electronic computing that had taken place during the war at Bletchley Park, where Turing was among the few who knew of Colossus.

Turing's employment at the NPL commenced on 1 October , by which time Mathematics Division was 'functioning on a limited scale'. By the end of he had completed his technical report 'Proposed Electronic Calculator'. He wrote to Darwin:. As mentioned previously, Womersley had no knowledge of Colossus. Consequently his view of the technological developments in computing was distorted, and he tended to exaggerate the intellectual debt owed by the ACE to the ENIAC and to the relay i.

Discussion was deferred until the March meeting, when the 'Committee resolved unanimously to support with enthusiasm the proposal that Mathematics Division should undertake the development and construction of an automatic computing engine of the type proposed by Dr. Notice his claim, mentioned earlier, that a single electronic computer might suffice for 'the whole country':.

However, as a result of ineffective management this would take much longer than anyone expected. By the time of Wilkinson's arrival Turing had reached what he called 'Version V' of the design. In 'Proposed Electronic Calculator' Turing had emphasized that work on writing programs i. Moreover, this policy would, he said, 'avoid some of the delay between the delivery of the machine and the production of results'.

Turing made this point again in a letter to Darwin: An end-of-year report summarized their achievements:. All this work was, of course, directed toward a machine that existed only on paper. The ACE Section, consisting only of three mathematicians, had no facilities to construct the computer.

Turing knew that Flowers, who had designed and built Colossus, was uniquely qualified to undertake the construction of the ACE. The 'arrears' mentioned by Radley were backlogs of urgent work on the national telephone system at that time managed by the Post Office.

His section was, Flowers said, 'too busy to do other people's work'. In August Darwin observed that the Post Office was 'not in a position to plunge very deep' and by November he was expressing concern to Radley and others at the Post Office about the 'slow rate of progress' on the ACE. Initially the NPL persisted with the idea of placing a contract for the construction of the ACE with an outside organization.

But this proved very difficult. Engineers experienced in the new art of digital electronics were scarce. Larger firms were 'likely to be too tied up with television and other consumer goods', and a suitable smaller company could not be found. The NPL also attemped to enlist the help of other public institutions. Williams helping us on our ACE' over two months after Womersley had made his initial approach—the pace of events was slow at the National Physical Laboratory.

Darwin realised that Williams' proposed memory was in Darwin's own words 'a most promising alternative But on the other hand, Turing's design for the ACE was intimately based on the mercury delay line. An enforced collaboration between Turing and the pioneer of cathode ray tube memory might not have worked out well!

By the beginning of there were no new initiatives to report. As previously mentioned, during Turing kept changing the logical design of the machine, and the NPL even considered using cathode ray tube memory in place of mercury delay lines—a change that would have meant most of the work done by Chandler and Coombs was wasted. Coombs described the situation from the engineers' point of view:. The situation improved when Harry Huskey—an engineer—arrived in Maths Division on a fixed-term contract.

Hartree was one of the few outsiders to know about Colossus; shortly after the end of the war Newman had invited him to Bletchley Park to look at Colossus. Huskey soon suggested that the ACE Section itself make a start on constructing the computer and he proposed to Womersley that a small test assembly be built.

With Womersley's blessing, Huskey, Wilkinson and Woodger began work. The new machine—soon called the 'Test Assembly'—was to be housed in the Babbage Building, a short distance from Maths Division. Turing was not in favour of this development.

On the one hand the Test Assembly was to be a small computer in its own right, involving much more equipment than was strictly necessary to test the fundamentals of Turing's design, and yet on the other it fell far short of being the ACE, so possibly Turing saw Huskey's project as diverting effort from his own.

According to Wilkinson, Turing 'tended to ignore the Test Assembly', simply 'standing to one side'. So I said, "It's Huskey's. Huskey and the others pushed ahead with the Test Assembly. By about the middle of , the NPL workshops were fabricating a mercury delay line to Huskey's specifications, valve types had been chosen and circuit block diagrams made, source and destination decisions had been taken, and programs were being written to check these decisions. Fieller expected—very optimistically—that the Test Assembly would 'be ready by the end of November'.

I certainly hoped the group would have it working in In January Turing had gone to the United States, visiting several of the groups that were attempting to build an electronic stored-program computer.

In his report on this visit he wrote:. Darwin decided that NPL's Radio Division was the best place for the experimental engineering work to be carried out. The minutes of the March meeting of the Executive Committee outlined the new arrangements:. The wheels of administration turned slowly and the idea of an in-house electronics section took several months to implement. At the end of April a joint minute to Darwin from Womersley and R.

Smith-Rose, Superintendent of Radio Division, suggested that individuals be transferred from other Divisions to Radio Division in order to form 'the nucleus of a future electronics section':. By August the months of 'careful consideration' finally came to an end and notes were sent out by E. Hiscocks the Secretary of the NPL to the Superintendents of various Divisions instructing them to transfer staff to Radio Division for a period of six months.

Smith-Rose reported to Darwin: Both Newman and Clayden were immersed in A. Even before the inaugural meeting, trouble was brewing behind the scenes. On 12 August Hiscocks wrote to Darwin to alert him to what seemed to be empire-building on Thomas's part:.

Thomas the empire-builder soon petitioned Darwin to curtail the construction work in the ACE Section. Wilkinson said in an interview given in Thomas persuaded the Director to lay it down that all work should be done in the Electronics Section and Darwin decreed that we should stop work on the Test Assembly'.

The result was that the construction of the ACE drew almost to a standstill. Although Newman and Clayden were skilled in digital techniques, Thomas's group had much to learn.

Thomas's own background was not in digital electronics at all but in radio and industrial electronics. The group 'began to develop their knowledge of pulse techniques', said Wilkinson, and 'for a while they just did basic things and became more familiar with the electronics they needed to learn to build a computer'.

As Womersley summed up the situation shortly afterwards, hardware development was 'probably as far advanced 18 months ago'. It seems probable that, given better management at the NPL, a minimal computer based on Turing's Version V could have run a program during Turing first proposed an in-house electronics section at the NPL in his report of 3 February The Radio Division group could have been set up in six weeks rather than six months. In August Womersley had pressed for this course of action, but Thomas threw a spanner in the works.

In mid Turing applied for a period of sabbatical leave to be spent at his Cambridge college. He proposed to pursue research on machine intelligence. Turing left for Cambridge in the autumn of The struggle to bring the ACE into existence was now led by Wilkinson. In Wilkinson recollected:. The combined group decided that the best course of action was to revive the Test Assembly, now described as a 'pilot model'.

The group completely redesigned the electronics of the machine. Soon the mathematicians from the ACE Section found themselves in a novel milieu.

Each of us had a soldering iron and we produced these things and passed them down the line. Oh, it was tremendous fun'.

Later known affectionately as 'Succ. Digs' successive digits , the program turned on a row of 32 lights on the control panel at a speed determined by size of the number on the input switches. Unreliable components were a problem and it was September before the machine had an error-free run of half an hour. The Pilot ACE was a huge success. It was used both to carry out research in numerical analysis and to do paid work through Mathematics Division's scientific computing service.

The Pilot ACE remained in continuous service until replaced by the first DEUCE in , by which time 'the amount of maintenance it require[d] preclude[d] it from being used economically as a computer'. Towards the end of , the NPL's efforts to find an engineering company willing to assist with the ACE at last bore fruit.

This contract was approved by the Treasury in May In an NPL memorandum set out a number of reasons for desiring to 'continue the collaboration with the E. Work began on a full-scale ACE in the autumn of Illingworth outlined the reasons for proceeding to this final stage of the project:. Only one was made. Wilkinson, Clayden, Davies, Newman, and Woodger all contributed to the final design.

The Big ACE was not the revolutionary machine that it would have been if completed six or seven years earlier. Not only did it employ valves in the era of the transistor, the designers also retained the by then outmoded mercury delay line memory proposed by Turing in In Colebrook urged that the proposed full-scale ACE 'be based on well proved components and techniques, even when revolutionary developments seem to be just around the corner'.

Turing's paper 'On Computable Numbers' gave the world the fundamental ingredients of the modern computer: In the United States, von Neumann placed Turing's concept of a stored-program universal computer into the hands of the electronic engineers who would build the first American machines. The paper profoundly influenced Newman , in whose Computing Machine Laboratory at Manchester in the first functioning electronic stored-program computer came to life. Turing taught Kilburn, the designer of this machine, the fundamentals of computer architecture in lectures in The first single-user, desk-side computer—the first personal computer—was also based on the ACE design Huskey's G Huskey's minimal ACE the Test Assembly might well have been the first electronic stored-program computer.

In addition to his remarkable theoretical and practical contributions to the development of the computer, Turing was the first pioneer of the areas of computing now known as Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Life. Turing on the ACE: National Physical Laboratory, Teddington Crown copyright. Archives of the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton photographer unknown.

King's College Library, Cambridge. Royal Mail Group plc Crown copyright. Dartmouth College Publicity Office. Computing Europe , 15 August The Turing Archive for the History of Computing.

McCulloch's essay, "Where is Fancy Bred? Fortune Magazine , June School of Computer Science, University of Manchester. International Science and Technology , February Oxford University Press, , pp. One Story of Radar Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, Based on the diagram on p. Faster Than Thought London: Redrawn by Parker Bright and Jack Copeland.

Digitally restored from a copy of the original by Olwen Harrison and Jack Copeland. Reproduced by permission of the National Science Foundation. Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge. A photo of Ed Newman is wrongly identified as Max Newman on p. Lee's book Computer Pioneers Los Alamitos: This web-book draws extensively on material from our previous publications, including: Springer, ; Copeland, B.

Elsevier Science, ; Copeland, B. A Comprehensive Handbook Amsterdam: Oxford University Press, ; new edition ; Copeland, B. Oxford University Press, ; Copeland, B. Life and Legacy of a Great Thinker Berlin: Springer Verlag, ; Copeland, B.

Bantam Books, ; Copeland, B. Kluwer, ; Copeland, B. Chrisley ed , Artificial Intelligence: Critical Concepts in Cognitive Science , Volume 2: Routledge, ; Proudfoot, D. Included in Copeland, B. Oxford University Press, Turing', The Times , 16 June , p. An Oral History of Computing' London: Oxford University Press, , chs 5 and 6. The Hut Six Story: Breaking the Enigma Codes 2nd edit.

Academic Press, ; Copeland, B. Oxford University Press, , new edition , ch. Much additional information about Newman is to be found in this volume, in chs. See also the biographical material on Newman in Copeland, B. Science Museum , transcription by Copeland.

The Computer from Pascal to von Neumann Princeton: Princeton University Press, , pp. Freeman, , p. Collected Works of John von Neumann Oxford: Pergamon Press, ; the quotation is from pp. The Origins of Digital Computers: Selected Papers , 3rd edn Berlin: Who Invented the Computer: Heffer, , p. The quotation is from pp. Academic Press, , p. University of Illinois Press, Audiotape of interview, supplied to Copeland by the archives of the London Science Museum in ; transcribed by Copeland When Ulam and von Neumann were touring in Europe during the summer of , von Neumann devised a mathematical game involving Turing-machine-like descriptions of numbers Ulam reported by William Aspray in his John von Neumann and the Origins of Modern Computing Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, , pp.

The word 'intrigued' is used in this connection by von Neumann's friend and colleague Herman Goldstine in his The Computer from Pascal to von Neumann Princeton: Princeton University Press, , p. Machine Intelligence 7 Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, Copeland is grateful to Randell for giving him a copy of the letter. Two Revolutions in Computers' in Metropolis, N. See also Aspray, W. Copeland is grateful to Bigelow for sending a transcript of excerpts from the interview.

Theory of Self-Reproducing Automata Urbana: University of Illinois Press, , ed. Burks ; the quotation is from p. See also Goldstine, H. Readings and Examples New York: McGraw-Hill, , pp. Coombs in interview with Evans in 'The Pioneers of Computing: Audiotape of interview, supplied to Copeland by the archives of the London Science Museum in The Very Idea Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, , p. Computers and Thought New York: Oxford University Press, , p.

Shadows of the Mind: Account of an Anticipation', in Davis, M. Raven, , pp. The quotation is from p. On Turing's test, see Proudfoot, D.

Turing's much misunderstood imitation game' Artificial Intelligence , vol. On philosophical issues in AI, see Proudfoot, D. Vintage, , p. Pergamon, , p. Copeland is grateful to Prinz's daughter, Daniela Derbyshire, for sending him a copy of Gradwell's article. McGraw-Hill, , p. Explorations in the Microstructure of Cognition , vol. Psychological and Biological Models Cambridge, Mass.: After reading our article, Christof Teuscher carried out a computational investigation of Turing's neural networks see his excellent Turing's Connectionism and our Foreword to the book London: Oxford University Press, ; the quotation is from p.

Collected Works , vol. Pergamon Press, ; the quotation from McCulloch is on p. Principles of Neurodynamics Washington, D. Addison-Wesley, , p. The research reported in these papers and throughout the present article spanned many years, and Copeland is indebted to numerous pioneers and historians of the computer for information and discussion some of whom are sadly no longer alive: Also to several Manchester historians for information, and for their comments on the view presented here of Newman's role in the Manchester project, in particular: Bantam Books, , p.

Bantam Books, , pp. An Oral History of Computing', London: A History of Manchester Computers Swindon: British Computer Society, 2nd edition, , p. Transcription by Copeland The letter is dated 3 August Oxford University Press, , new edition , pp. Lectures 10 and 33, in Campbell-Kelly, M. The date of Sheppard's report of Sharpless's work was 24 July Science Museum , transcription by Copeland; Kilburn, T.

American Institute of Electrical Engineers, , p. Kilburn was reported circa as 'quite certain' that he was told of this success when he joined Williams' project prior to the end of October 'Williams Cathode Ray Tube Storage: Other writers treat the perceptions of middle-age people regarding their own old age. In her The Denial of Aging , Dr. Gillick, a baby boomer , accuses her contemporaries of believing that by proper exercise and diet they can avoid the scourges of old age and proceed from middle age to death.

These discourses take part in a general idea of successful ageing. However, at about age 80, all people experience similar morbidity. Early old age is a pleasant time; children are grown, retirement from work, time to pursue interests. The scribe addressed God with a prayer of lament: O Sovereign my Lord!

Oldness has come; old age has descended. Feebleness has arrived; dotage is here anew. The heart sleeps wearily every day. The eyes are weak, the ears are deaf, the strength is disappearing because of weariness of the heart and the mouth is silent and cannot speak. The heart is forgetful and cannot recall yesterday.

The bone suffers old age. Good is become evil. All taste is gone. What old age does to men is evil in every respect. Minois comments that the scribe's "cry shows that nothing has changed in the drama of decrepitude between the age of the Pharaoh and the atomic age" and "expresses all the anguish of old people in the past and the present.

Lillian Rubin , active in her 80s as an author, sociologist, and psychotherapist, opens her book 60 on Up: The Truth about Aging in America with "getting old sucks. It always has, it always will. Rubin contrasts the "real old age" with the "rosy pictures" painted by middle-age writers.

Writing at the age of 87, Mary C. Morrison delineates the heroism required by old age: Morrison concludes, "old age is not for the fainthearted. One interviewee described living in old age as "pure hell. Based on his survey of old age in history, Georges Minois concludes that "it is clear that always and everywhere youth has been preferred to old age.

In the Classical period of Greek and Roman cultures, old age was denigrated as a time of "decline and decrepitude. Old age was reckoned as one of the unanswerable "great mysteries" along with evil, pain, and suffering.

The Medieval and Renaissance periods depicted old age as "cruel or weak. Historical periods reveal a mixed picture of the "position and status" of old people, but there has never been a "golden age of aging. In ancient times, although some strong and healthy people lived until they were over 70 most died before they were The general understanding is that those who lived into their 40's were treated with respect and awe. In contrast, those who were frail were seen as a burden and ignored or in extreme cases killed.

Although he was skeptical of the gods, Aristotle concurred in the dislike of old people. In his Ethics , he wrote that "old people are miserly; they do not acknowledge disinterested friendship; only seeking for what can satisfy their selfish needs. The 16th century utopians, Thomas More and Antonio de Guevara allowed no decrepit old people in their fictional lands. For Thomas More, on the island of Utopia , when people are so old as to have "out-lived themselves" and are terminally ill, in pain, and a burden to everyone, the priests exhort them about choosing to die.

The priests assure them that "they shall be happy after death. Antonio de Guevara 's utopian nation "had a custom, not to live longer than sixty five years. Rather than condemn the practice, Bishop Guevara called it a "golden world" in which people "have overcome the natural appetite to desire to live. In the Modern period, the "cultural status" of old people has declined in many cultures. Research on age-related attitudes consistently finds that negative attitudes exceed positive attitudes toward old people because of their looks and behavior.

Harvard University's implicit-association test measures implicit "attitudes and beliefs" about Young vis a vis Old. The young are "consistent in their negative attitude" toward the old. Despite its prevalence, ageism is seldom the subject of public discourse. In , a documentary film called The Age of Love used humor and poignant adventures of 30 seniors who attend a speed dating event for to year-olds, and discovered how the search for romance changes; or does not change; from a childhood sweetheart to older age.

Simone de Beauvoir wrote that "there is one form of experience that belongs only to those that are old — that of old age itself. On set 1, write your 5 most enjoyed activities; on set 2, write your 5 most valued possessions; on set 3, write your 5 most loved people. Then "lose" them one by one, trying to feel each loss, until you have lost them all as happens in old age.

Most people in the age range of 60—80 the years of retirement and early old age , enjoy rich possibilities for a full life, but the condition of frailty distinguished by "bodily failure" and greater dependence becomes increasingly common after that. Gerontologists note the lack of research regarding and the difficulty in defining frailty. However, they add that physicians recognize frailty when they see it. A group of geriatricians proposed a general definition of frailty as "a physical state of increased vulnerability to stressors [] that results from decreased reserves and disregulation [] in multiple physiological systems.

Frailty is a common condition in later old age but different definitions of frailty produce diverse assessments of prevalence. A worldwide study of "patterns of frailty" based on data from 20 nations found a a consistent correlation between frailty and age, b a higher frequency among women, and c more frailty in wealthier nations where greater support and medical care increases longevity.

The study calls these years the "fourth age" or "old age in the real meaning of the term. People in their 70s were mostly rated good. In the 80—90 year range, the four levels of functionality were divided equally. Three unique markers of frailty have been proposed: Old age survivors on-average deteriorate from agility in their 65—80s to a period of frailty preceding death.

This deterioration is gradual for some and precipitous for others. Frailty is marked by an array of chronic physical and mental problems which means that frailty is not treatable as a specific disease. These problems coupled with increased dependency in the basic activities of daily living ADLs required for personal care add emotional problems: Johnson and Barer did a pioneering study of Life Beyond 85 Years by interviews over a six-year period.

Such erroneous conceptions include 1 people in old age have at least one family member for support, 2 old age well-being requires social activity, and 3 "successful adaptation" to age-related changes demands a continuity of self-concept. Second, that contrary to popular notions, the interviews revealed that the reduced activity and socializing of the over 85s does not harm their well-being; they "welcome increased detachment.

Frail people require a high level of care. Medical advances have made it possible to "postpone death" for years. This added time costs many frail people "prolonged sickness, dependence, pain, and suffering. According to a study by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality AHRQ , the rate of emergency department visits was consistently highest among patients ages 85 years and older in — in the United States. These final years are also costly in economic terms.

Medical treatments in the final days are not only economically costly, they are often unnecessary, even harmful. The frail are vulnerable to "being tipped over" by any physical stress put on the system such as medical interventions.

Old age, death, and frailty are linked because approximately half the deaths in old age are preceded by months or years of frailty. Older Adults' Views on Death is based on interviews with people in the 70—90 age range, with a mean age of About the same number said that, given a terminal illness, they would choose assisted suicide.

Roughly half chose doing nothing except live day by day until death comes naturally without medical or other intervention designed to prolong life. This choice was coupled with a desire to receive palliative care if needed. About half of older adults suffer multimorbidity, that is, they have three or more chronic conditions.

Most of the interviewees did not fear death; some would welcome it. One person said, "Living this long is pure hell. Some wanted to die in their sleep; others wanted to die "on their feet. The study of Older Adults' Views on Death found that the more frail people were, the more "pain, suffering, and struggles" they were enduring, the more likely they were to "accept and welcome" death as a release from their misery.

Their fear about the process of dying was that it would prolong their distress. Besides being a release from misery, some saw death as a way to reunion with departed loved ones. Others saw death as a way to free their caretakers from the burden of their care. Generally speaking, old people have always been more religious than young people.

In a British year longitudinal study, less than half of the old people surveyed said that religion was "very important" to them and a quarter said they had become less religious in old age. Participation in organized religion is not a good indicator of religiosity because transportation and health problems often hinder participation. In the industrialized countries, life expectancy and, thus, the old age population have increased consistently over the last decades. By , the number of senior citizens had increased to about 35 million of million US citizens.

Population experts estimate that more than 50 million Americans—about 17 percent of the population—will be 65 or older in The number of old people is growing around the world chiefly because of the post—World War II baby boom and increases in the provision and standards of health care. The growing number of people living to their 80s and 90s in the developed world has strained public welfare systems and has also resulted in increased incidence of diseases like cancer and dementia that were rarely seen in premodern times.

Other issues that can arise from an increasing population are growing demands for health care and an increase in demand for different types of services. Of the roughly , people who die each day across the globe, about two thirds—, per day—die of age-related causes. According to Erik Erikson 's "Stages of Psychosocial Development" , the human personality is developed in a series of eight stages that take place from the time of birth and continue on throughout an individual's complete life.

He characterises old age as a period of "Integrity vs. Despair", during which a person focuses on reflecting back on his life. Those who are unsuccessful during this phase will feel that their life has been wasted and will experience many regrets. The individual will be left with feelings of bitterness and despair.

Those who feel proud of their accomplishments will feel a sense of integrity. Successfully completing this phase means looking back with few regrets and a general feeling of satisfaction. These individuals will attain wisdom, even when confronting death. The way a person adapts and copes, reflects his aging process on a psycho-social level. Elderhood refers to those individuals who live past the life expectancy of their birth cohorts.

There are two different types of people described in this stage of life. The "young old" are the healthy individuals who can function on their own without assistance and can complete their daily tasks independently. The "old old" are those who depend on specific services due to declining health or diseases.

This period of life is characterized as a period of "immortality vs. Extinction refers to feeling as if life has no purpose. Social theories, or concepts, [] propose explanations for the distinctive relationships between old people and their societies. One of the theories is the Disengagement Theory proposed in This theory proposes that in old age a mutual disengagement between people and their society occurs in anticipation of death.

By becoming disengaged from work and family responsibilities, according to this concept, people are enabled to enjoy their old age without stress. This theory has been subjected to the criticism that old age disengagement is neither natural, inevitable, nor beneficial. In opposition to the Disengagement Theory the Activity Theory of old age argues that disengagement in old age occurs not by desire, but by the barriers to social engagement imposed by society. This theory has been faulted for not factoring in psychological changes that occur in old age as shown by reduced activity even when available.

It has also been found that happiness in old age is not proportional to activity. According to the Continuity Theory , in spite of the inevitable differences imposed by their old age, most people try to maintain continuity in personhood, activities, and relationships with their younger days.

Socioemotional Selectivity Theory also depicts how people maintain continuity in old age. The focus of this theory is continuity sustained by social networks, albeit networks narrowed by choice and by circumstances. The choice is for more harmonious relationships. The circumstances are loss of relationships by death and distance. Life expectancy by nation at birth in the year ranged from 48 years to Low values indicate high death rates for infants and children.

In most parts of the world women live, on average, longer than men; even so, the disparities vary between 12 years in Russia to no difference or higher life expectancy for men in countries such as Zimbabwe and Uganda. The number of elderly persons worldwide began to surge in the second half of the 20th century. Up to that time and still true in underdeveloped countries , five or less percent of the population was over Few lived longer than their 70s and people who attained advanced age i.

The worldwide over 65 population in was one-third of the under 5 population. By , the over 65 population had grown to equal the under 5 population. The over 65 population is projected to double the under five by Before the surge in the over 65 population, accidents and disease claimed many people before they could attain old age, and health problems in those over 65 meant a quick death in most cases.

In October , scientists identified the maximum human lifespan at an average age of , with an absolute upper limit of years. German chancellor Otto von Bismarck created the world's first comprehensive government social safety net in the s, providing for old age pensions. In the United States of America , and the United Kingdom , 65 UK 60 for women was traditionally the age of retirement with full old age benefits.

In , the age at which a United States citizen became eligible for full Social Security benefits began to increase gradually, and will continue to do so until it reaches 67 in Full retirement age for Social Security benefits for people retiring in is age Originally, the purpose of old age pensions was to prevent elderly persons from being reduced to beggary, which is still common in some underdeveloped countries, but growing life expectancies and older populations have brought into question the model under which pension systems were designed.

Many new assistive devices made especially for the home have enabled more old people to care for themselves activities of daily living ADL. Able Data [] lists 40, assistive technology products in 20 categories. The subjects were ambivalent regarding the use of the assistive devices: Those who see them as symbols of disability reject them.

Even with assistive devices as of , 8. There is home care in which a family member, volunteer, or trained professional will aid the person in need and help with daily activities. Another option is community services which can provide the person with transportation, meal plans, or activities in senior centers.

A third option is assisted living where hour round-the-clock supervision is given with aid in eating, bathing, dressing, etc. A final option is a nursing home which provides professional nursing care. A scholarly literature has emerged, especially in Britain, showing historical trends in the visual depiction of old age.

Titian , Self-Portrait c. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see Elder disambiguation. For the Khmer Rouge term, see New People.

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