RE: SV: [OPE] Studying unproductive labor: CEPR report

Date: Thu Feb 28 2008 - 12:32:03 EST

> Whilst some early computers had government funding: Collosus at > Bletchely Park devised for breaking th 'Fish' code and Zuse's Z3 developed for the Luftwaffe, > these models were secret and had virtually no influence on comercially developed > computers.
Hi Paul C:
Z3 led to Z4 and _that_ was commercially adopted.
ENIAC, arguably the "first general-purpose electronic computer", 
was "designed and built to calculate artillery firing tables for the
U.S. Army's Ballistic Research Laboratory" (wikipedia).
> The first working programmable computer, the Manchester Mark 1 or 1948 > was developed  by an academic group without military funding. 
The British government, in October, 1948,  was instrumental in the  
_innovation_ of the Manchester Mark 1.
> The best selling IBM computers of the 1950s the 700 series were an > outgrowth of their business tabulator> line, the 7000 series developed for the NSA had little commercial > impact, though it is> arguable that a couple of the top of the range 1960s machines produced > by IBM used technologies> protoyped on 'Stretch' a machine developed for the NSA.
Recall that the electrical tabulating machines were designed by Herman Hollerith
for use in the 1890 US Census  and were built under contract with the 
US government.
 > The microprocessor was developed by Intel in response to the request of > a Japanese  desktop calculator company.
Garrett Air Research, at about the same time, was "invited" to produce
this for use in  the US Navy's F-14 Tomcat.
> The most rapid development today comes from the needs, ironically, of the> home entertainment industry.
What is the source for video games?  Wasn't this related to 
technologies like military flight simulators?
Certainly, developments in communications have spurred the home
entertainment industry. But, that can  be traced back to satellite
communications - a technology that owes its origins and development
primarily to military R&D.  
> It is at least arguable, that the sucesses of US and UK industry in > mobilising> for war in WWII rested on the prior development of consumer mass production> industries -- car production, radio production and television production.
There's some truth to that. In the US during WWII most of the tanks and 
small planes were built in what had been GM, Ford, and Chrysler auto plants.
In solidarity, Jerry

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