Hopper was born in New York City. She was the eldest of three children.
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An admiral who never went to sea, Hopper owed her success in the U. Navy, as in civilian life, to her mastery of computers and computing.
Entering the field at its very beginnings in the s, she spent the next four decades leading the way in the development of computer languages. The oldest of three children, Hopper was raised in New York City in a family that encouraged intellectual curiosity.
An early interest in mathematics was stimulated by both her mother, Mary van Horne Murray, the daughter of a civil engineer, and by her father, Walter Murray, an insurance broker.
Vassar, just north of New York City, was a prestigious private college offering a rigorous education to the bright daughters of the affluent. Instead, she concentrated on mathematics and physics.
InHopper graduated from Vassar with a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics and physics and was elected to Phi Beta Kappaa preeminent national honor society.
Two years later, Hopper received a Master of Arts degree in mathematics from Yale. Hopper, meanwhile, continued her graduate studies at Yale, one of only two women in the mathematics doctoral program. Inin addition to her own studies, Hopper began teaching mathematics at Vassar.
She was a naturally gifted teacher, and for much of the next fifty years she continued to teach, at least a course or two, whenever she could. InHopper was awarded a PhD in mathematics from Yale, the only woman to receive one of seven doctorates in mathematics granted by the university between and Her work with him on partial differential equations showed up later on her navy job classification card and was, she believed, the reason for her wartime assignment to the computing program at Harvard University.
World War II and the Navy. After Pearl Harbor she was determined to join the navy because, she explained, one of her great grandfathers had been an admiral during the Civil War. Furthermore, she and Vincent had just separated they were divorced inand Hopper never remarriedso she was free to serve.
In Decemberat the age of thirty-seven, Hopper was sworn in to the U. Between the two world wars the growth of large-scale businesses required dealing with modern calculation and record-keeping needs.
Work progressed in several industrial and academic laboratories on improved calculators. One or two early computer designs were also produced. By the early s, Vannevar Bush and his colleagues at MIT had created a differential analyzer, an electromechanical analog computercopies of which were widely used during World War II.
InGeorge R. Atanasoff worked on an electronic digital device that some consider the first electronic digital computer in the United Statesthough it never worked.
In Germany, Konrad Zuse developed various generations of computers named for him, and in England, Alan Turing developed a relay-based machine, called a bombe, to decrypt German enigma codes. InHoward Aiken began work at Harvard University on an electromechanical relay machine to perform long mathematical calculations automatically.
Aiken, by then a professor of physics and applied mathematics and a naval reserve officer, was assigned to command the Harvard Computation Laboratory for the navy.
To run the operation he assembled and trained a small team of mathematicians who, like himself, were serving in the wartime navy. Among them was Grace Hopper. The Mark I measured 51 feet long, 8 feet tall, and 8 feet deep.
It had more thanparts, used miles of wire, and weighed more than 5 tons. A four-horsepower electric motor and drive shaft drove all the mechanical parts by a system of interlocking gears, counters, switches, and control circuits.
Input was entered by punching holes in paper tape that was then fed into the machine. Output was handled automatically by electric typewriters.
What emerged was the first functional, large-scale, automatically sequenced, general-purpose digital computer in the United States.
It was electromechanical, destined to dominate the field for only a year or two, briefly bridging the gap between calculators and electronic computers. The Mark I was reliable, accurate, and speedy—at least one hundred times faster than hand-operated calculators.
It was also adaptable and could be set to perform a wide range of different types of numerical calculations. This multipurpose capability of the Mark I set it apart from other contemporary devices, particularly the electronic ENIAC, with which it has been unfavorably compared but which was not fully functional until after the end of the war.
Hopper always maintained that the most important thing she learned from Aiken was the notion of a general purpose computer—one that could undertake any task that could be described by a series of logical instructions. Because the computer was the first of its kind, she had no experience in coding, and she and her colleagues— arguably the first programmers—had to develop ways to express mathematical problems in digital machine code.
Each mathematical process had to be broken down into very small steps of addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division, and put into a sequence. After figuring out how to write the machine instructions, Hopper punched them on tape, put the tape in the computer, and hoped it would run.The IBM Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator (ASCC), called Mark I by Harvard University’s staff, was a general purpose electromechanical computer that was used in the war effort during the last part of World War II..
One of the first programs to run on the Mark I was initiated on 29 March by John von initiativeblog.com that time, von Neumann . Grace Brewster Murray was born on December 9, in New York City, USA. Hopper was her married surname.
Her father was Walter Fletcher Murray, an insurance executive; and her mother was the mathematically talented Mary Campbell Van Horne. HOPPER, GRACE MURRAY (initiativeblog.com York, New York, 9 December , initiativeblog.comgton, D.C., 1 January ), computer sciences, programming languages, COBOL..
An admiral who never went to sea, Hopper owed her success in the U.S. Navy, as in civilian life, to her mastery of computers and computing. Grace Hopper became the first woman to earn a Ph.D.
in mathematics from Yale University in Did You Know? In , Grace Hopper and her team created the first compiler for computer languages. Grace Brewster Murray Hopper (née Murray; December 9, – January 1, ) was an American computer scientist and United States Navy rear admiral.
One of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer, she was a pioneer of computer programming who invented one of the first compiler related tools. She popularized the . Biography of Grace Murray Hopper Grace Brewster Murray Hopper () was a computer pioneer and naval officer.
She earned a master’s degree () and a Ph.D. () in mathematics from Yale.