Exhibits At the Museum

This Day in History

Today: November 29, 2014
George Boole. His method of formal logic - defining statements as true or false - has been used extensively in computer programming and hardware design since the late 1940s

November 2, 1815

Logician Boole Born

George Boole, the British creator of a mathematico-logical system that bears his name, is born in Lincoln, England. He began his career as a schoolteacher, writing articles on mathematics in his spare time. These investigations led to the book Mathematical Analysis of Logic. Queen's University at Cork, Ireland, recognized Boole's contributions and offered him the chair of mathematics in 1848. This opportunity allowed Boole to extend his studies and produce his most significant work An Investigation of the Laws of Thought. Dublin and Oxford Universities awarded Boole honorary degrees, and the Royal Society of London elected him as a fellow. Boole was elected as an honorary member of the Cambridge Philosophical Society in 1858. He died of pneumonia on December 8, 1864, at the age of 50.


November 2, 1916

Adriaan van Wijngaarden Born

Adriaan van Wijngaarden was a leader in programming linguistics and language translation and a contributor to Algol 60. He led the recasting of Algol 60 into Algol 68, a vastly different language that was not only state of the art but also incited features that were far ahead of its time. He received the IEEE Computer Society Pioneer Award for this work in 1986. He died in 1987.