Articles on History

Last updated: 2022/11/28

Top deep-dives on History

Working in the software industry, circa 1989

Jim Grey shares a bit of what it was like developing software over 30 years ago.

How We Ended up with Git

Git has become a major part of most software development infrastructure. And it makes sense. It's a fantastic tool for keeping track of work from lots of people (most of the times). In this informative article, Dino Esposito talks about Git's history, explores the differences between distributed and centralized source code control systems, git's philosophy, and finally ending with an overview of all the different products available for source code control.

if... then... else had to be invented!

An interesting dive into the history of programming and the origins of if, then, and else by Eric Fischer.

Get me off Your Fucking Mailing List

You ever been so upset about something, you decided to publish a paper decrying it? Everyone has got a few things that will set them off, make their eyes pop, or their head explode from fury and rage. In this thorough paper, David Mazi`eres and Eddie Kohler drive home a very clear, and powerful message; it's time to get them off your fucking mailing list.

Back to the '70s with Serverless

I'll be straight up and say this is a bit of a rant, but Cees de Groot brings up some good points about unnecessary complexity in software. Cees basically makes the point that the complexity of serverless isn't really worth it, and that having non-instant feedback makes development slow.

Booting the IBM 1401: How a 1959 punch-card computer loads a program

Something about using punch cards for programming just fascinates me. It's kind of wild to think how far we've come from the first programmers (in terms of quality of life more so than quality of code). Ken Shirriff's article is about the IBM 1401 computer and how it loaded programs from punch cards.

Turing Oversold

Been a while since we've had a historical article. In this one, Jürgen Schmidhuber navigates the history of computers, illuminating the works of the giants whose shoulders Turing stood upon, underlining their substantial contribution to the creation of computers.

The digital ranging system that measured the distance to the Apollo spacecraft

Ken Shirriff outlines in detail the technological marvel that was the system used to measure the distance to the spacecraft sent to the moon.

Street Fighter II, Sound System internals

Fabien Sanglard presents what it took for you to hear the sound effects in the iconic Street Fighter II arcade game.

The Origins of Python

Lambert Meertens goes back in time to describe the history of Python, while also touching on previously existing languages and language design in general.
Some highlights:

  • "The ability to evolve and adapt to changing needs is an essential attribute for the long-term survival of any programming language"
  • Python's success can be attributed to its simplicity and ease of learning
  • Python was inspired by ABC

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