n addition in 200 {microseconds}, a

multiplication in about three milliseconds, and a division in about 30 milliseconds.

John von Neumann, a world-renowned mathematician serving on the BRL Scientific Advisory Committee, soon joined the developers of ENIAC and made some critical contributions. While Mauchly, Eckert and the Penn team continued on the technological problems, he, Goldstine, and others took up the logical problems.

In 1947, while working on the design for the successor machine, EDVAC, von Neumann realized that ENIAC's lack of a central control unit could be overcome to obtain a rudimentary stored program computer (see the Clippinger reference below). Modifications were undertaken that eventually led to an instruction set of 92 "orders". Von Neumann also proposed the fetch-execute cycle.

[R. F. Clippinger, "A Logical Coding System Applied to the ENIAC", Ballistic Research Laboratory Report No. 673, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, September 1948. http://ftp.arl.mil/~mike/comphist/48eniac-coding].

[H. H. Goldstine, "The Computer from Pascal to von Neumann", Princeton University Press, 1972].

[K. Kempf, "Electronic Computers within the Ordnance Corps", Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, 1961. http://ftp.arl.mil/~mike/comphist/61ordnance].

[M. H. Weik, "The ENIAC Story", J. American Ordnance Assoc., 1961. http://ftp.arl.mil/~mike/comphist/eniac-story.html].

[How "general purpose" was ENIAC, compared to Zuse's Z3?]

Last updated: 2003-10-01

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