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By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 11-07-2011

Computer History Quiz: Ten Most Influential Contributors

Answer: He's the mathematician/mechanical engineer who sprung the concept of the programmable computer in 1812.

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Question: Who is Charles Babbage?

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Answer: He's the "father of information theory" who concluded in 1937 that electrical application of Boolean algebra could be used for computation and digital calculation.

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Question: Who is Claude Shannon?

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Answer: In 1950, he defined artificial intelligence as that in which an exchange with a machine is indistinguishable from human interaction.

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Question: Who is Alan Turing?

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Answer: He determined in 1945 that programs should be stored in memory, along with data.

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Question: Who is John von Neumann?

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Answer: This 1956 Nobel Prize winner and reputed "founder of Silicon Valley" co-invented the transistor and created the Shockley Semiconductor.

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Question: Who is William Shockley?

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Answer: He conducted famous "Mother of All Demos" in 1968, which introduced the computer mouse, video conferencing, teleconferencing, hypertext, word processing and other tools we take for granted now.

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Question: Who is Douglas Engelbart?

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Answer: He co-invented the integrated circuit and co-founded Fairchild Semiconductor in 1957 and Intel in 1968, and was dubbed "Mayor of Silicon Valley."

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Question: Who is Robert Noyce?

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Answer: This Apple co-founder created the Apple I and Apple II computers in the 1970s, igniting the PC revolution.

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Question: Who is Steve Wozniak? (We had to let you have one easy one.)

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Answer: This Rear Admiral served as programming trailblazer, popularizing the term "debugging" and conceptualizing machine-independent programming languages, leading to COBOL in 1959.

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Question: Who is "Amazing" Grace Murray Hopper?

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Answer: He's the DARPA program manager who helped develop TCP/IP technology, as well as the first commercial email system in 1980s - emerging as a founding father of the Internet for his efforts.

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Question: Who is Vint Cerf?