Humanity’s activities in space have changed how we understand our place in the Universe, and have become essential to life as we know it. Space science – from astronomy to planetary science – have provided new understandings of how we and our planet fit into the cosmic puzzle. Space services – from GPS to communications, and from imaging to scientific measurements – have become invaluable to our everyday lives, from daily navigation to weather prediction, and much, much, more. From the very beginning of humanity’s space history, digital computing has played a vital, enabling role. The importance of computing to space history even compares to that of rocketry. Once the exclusive domain of nation-states, space activities are increasingly pursued by private firms. From launch services to satellite fleets and commercial tourism, computing remains absolutely vital to these pursuits.
As the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing approaches, the Museum is delighted to present a distinguished panel to provide insights and perspectives on the place of computing in space history: Dan Lickly, who played key roles in the development of the software for the Apollo Guidance Computer; Matthew Shindell, historian of science and a Space History curator at the National Air and Space Museum; and Charles Simonyi, legendary programmer, Microsoft executive, and two-time space tourist.
This event is made possible through the generous support of Antje and Paul Newhagen.
Antje and Paul Newhagen.
Technically Speaking is a part of the Museum’s CHM Live programming. It showcases leading historians, authors, professors, and technology experts exploring historical and technical elements of computing. These conversations or lectures provide an in-depth look at surprising, unusual, or little-known topics. As respected experts in their fields, speakers provide insightful and unique perspectives on technology. computerhistory.org/chmlive
The Software History Center @CHM collects, preserves, and interprets the history of software and its transformational effects on global society. Software is what a computer does. The existence of code reflects the story of the people who made it. The transformational effects of software are the consequences of people’s creation and use of code. In the stories of these people lie the technical, business, and cultural histories of software—from timesharing services to the cloud, from custom code to packaged programs, from developers to entrepreneurs, from smartphones to supercomputers. The center is exploring these people-centered stories, documenting software-in-action, and leveraging the Museum’s rich collections to tell the story of software, preserve its history, and put it to work today for gauging where we are, where we have been, and where we might be going. For details, see computerhistory.org/softwarehistory.
Computer History Museum
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Mountain View, CA, 94043