HERMAN HOLLERITH (February 29, 1860 – November 17, 1929) was an
American inventor who developed an electromechanical punched card
tabulator to assist in summarizing information and, later, accounting.
He was the founder of the Tabulating Machine Company that was
amalgamated (via stock acquisition) in 1911 with three other companies
to form a fifth company, the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company
IBM . Hollerith is regarded as one of the seminal
figures in the development of data processing . His invention of the
punched card tabulating machine marks the beginning of the era of
semiautomatic data processing systems, and his concept dominated that
landscape for nearly a century.
* 1 Personal life
Electromechanical tabulation of data
* 3 Inventions and businesses
* 4 Death and legacy
* 5 See also
* 6 Notes
* 7 Further reading
* 8 External links
Herman Hollerith was born the son of German immigrant Prof. Georg
Neustadt an der Weinstraße ) in
Buffalo, New York
Buffalo, New York , where he spent his early childhood. He entered
City College of New York
City College of New York in 1875, graduated from the Columbia
University School of Mines with an "Engineer of Mines" degree in 1879
at age 19, and in 1890 asked for (and was awarded) a Ph.D based on his
development of the tabulating system. In 1882 Hollerith joined the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he taught mechanical
engineering and conducted his first experiments with punched cards.
He eventually moved to
Washington, D.C. , living in Georgetown , with
a home on 29th Street and a business building at 31st Street and the
C"> Photo dated 1919.12.31 of census worker with Hollerith
pantograph punch. The keyboard layout is for the US Census 1920
population card. Hollerith tabulating machine with sorting
box. The "sorting box" was controlled by the tabulator. The "sorter",
an independent machine, was a later development.
The herein-described method of compiling statistics, which consists
in recording separate statistical items pertaining to the individual
by holes or combinations of holes punched in sheets of electrically
non-conducting material, and bearing a specific relation to each other
and to a standard, and then counting or tallying such statistical
items separately or in combination by means of mechanical counters
operated by electro-magnets the circuits through which are controlled
by the perforated sheets, substantially as and for the purpose set
INVENTIONS AND BUSINESSES
Hollerith punched card Hollerith's grave at Oak Hill
Cemetery in Georgetown in
Hollerith had left teaching and begun working for the United States
Census Bureau in the year he filed his first patent application.
Titled "Art of Compiling Statistics", it was filed on September 23,
1884; U.S. Patent 395,782 was granted on January 8, 1889.
Hollerith initially did business under his own name, as The Hollerith
Electric Tabulating System, specializing in punched card data
processing equipment . He provided tabulators and other machines
under contract for the Census Office, which used them for the 1890
census . The net effect of the many changes from the 1880 census: the
larger population, the data items to be collected, the Census Bureau
headcount, the scheduled publications, and the use of Hollerith's
electromechanical tabulators, was to reduce the time required to
process the census from eight years for the 1880 census to six years
for the 1890 census.
In 1896 Hollerith founded the Tabulating Machine Company (in 1905
renamed The Tabulating Machine Company). Many major census bureaus
around the world leased his equipment and purchased his cards, as did
major insurance companies. Hollerith's machines were used for censuses
in England, Italy, Germany, Russia, Austria, Canada, France, Norway,
Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Philippines, and again in the 1900 census .
He invented the first automatic card-feed mechanism and the first
keypunch . The 1890 Tabulator was hardwired to operate on 1890 Census
cards. A control panel in his 1906 Type I Tabulator simplified
rewiring for different jobs. The 1920s removable control panel
supported prewiring and near instant job changing. These inventions
were among the foundations of the data processing industry and
Hollerith's punched cards (later used for computer input/output )
continued in use for almost a century.
In 1911 four corporations, including Hollerith's firm, were
amalgamated to form a fifth company, the
Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR). Under the presidency of
Thomas J. Watson , CTR was renamed International Business Machines
Corporation (IBM) in 1924. By 1933 The Tabulating Machine Company name
had disappeared as subsidiary companies were subsumed by IBM.
DEATH AND LEGACY
Hollerith is buried at Oak Hill Cemetery in the Georgetown
Hollerith cards were named after the elder Herman Hollerith, as were
Hollerith constants (also sometimes called Hollerith strings), an
early type of string constant declaration (in computer programming).
His great-grandson, the Rt. Rev.
Herman Hollerith IV is the Episcopal
bishop of the Diocese of Southern Virginia , and another
great-grandson, Randolph Marshall Hollerith, is an Episcopal priest
and the dean of Washington National Cathedral in
Washington D.C. .
List of pioneers in computer science
* ^ "Lucia Beverly Talcott". ancestry.com . Retrieved 28 Feb 2015.
* ^ Cambell-Kelly, Martin; Aspray, William (2004). Computer: a
history of the information machine (2 ed.). Basic Books. p. 16.
* ^ A B C Da Cruz, Frank (28 Mar 2011). "Herman Hollerith".
www.columbia.edu. Columbia University. Retrieved 28 Feb 2014.
* ^ Brooks, Frederick P.; Iverson, Kenneth E. (1963). Automatic
Data Processing. Wiley. p. 94 "semiautomatic".
* ^ "
Herman Hollerith (1860-1929)". www.hnf.de.
Paderborn : Heinz
Nixdorf MuseumsForum. 18 Apr 2012. Retrieved 28 Feb 2014.
* ^ Austrian, 1982, p.56
* ^ O'Connor, J.J.; Robertson, E.F. "Herman Hollerith". The
MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive. School of Mathematics and
Statistics, University of St Andrews, Scotland. Retrieved 5 March
* ^ Lydenberg, Harry Miller (1924). John Shaw Billings: Creator of
the National Medical Library and its Catalogue, First Director of the
New York Public Library. American Library Association. p. 32.
* ^ Randell (ed.), Brian (1982). The Origins of Digital Computers,
Selected Papers (3rd ed.). Springer-Verlag. ISBN 0-387-11319-3 . CS1
maint: Extra text: authors list (link )
* ^ US patent 395782, Herman Hollerith, "Art of compiling
statistics", issued 1889-01-08
* ^ (Truesdell, 1965, p.144)
* ^ Austrian, Geoffrey D. (1982). Herman Hollerith: Forgotten Giant
of Information Processing.
Columbia University Press. pp. 41,
178–179. ISBN 0-231-05146-8 .
* ^ "Oak Hill Cemetery Map". www.oakhillcemeterydc.org.
* ^ US 395782
* ^ (Austrian, 1982, p.153)
* ^ Report of the Commissioner of Labor In Charge of The Eleventh
Census to the Secretary of the Interior for the Fiscal Year Ending
June 30, 1895 Washington, D.C., July 29 1895 Page 9: "You may
confidently look for the rapid reduction of the force of this office
after the 1st of October, and the entire cessation of clerical work
during the present calendar year. ... The condition of the work of the
Census Division and the condition of the final reports show clearly
that the work of the Eleventh Census will be completed at least two
years earlier than was the work of the Tenth Census." Carroll D.
Wright Commissioner of Labor in Charge.
* ^ (Engelbourg, 1954, p.52)
* ^ "
IBM Archives: Frequently Asked Questions" (PDF). Some
accounts of the forming CTR state that only three corporations were
included. This reference notes that only three of the four
corporations are represented in the CTR name. That may be the reason
for the differing accounts.
* ^ William Rodgers (1969). THINK: A Biography of the Watsons and
IBM. p. 83.
* ^ Steven G. Vegh (13 February 2009). "New Epsicopal bishop to
face tough challenges". Virginian-Pilot.
* ^ "Virginia diocese to install bishop". Richmond Times-Dispatch.
For more on
Punched card history, technology, see: Unit record
equipment#Further reading For
IBM#Further reading and
* Ashurst, Gareth (1983). Pioneers of Computing. Frederick Muller.
* Austrian, Geoffrey D. (1982). Herman Hollerith: The Forgotten
Giant of Information Processing.
Columbia University Press. p. 418.
ISBN 0-231-05146-8 .
* Beniger, James R. (1986/2009) The Control Revolution:
Technological and Economic Origins of the Information Society ,
Harvard University Press, 1986 pp. 390–425
* Cortada, James W. (1993). Before the Computer: IBM, NCR,
Burroughs, & Remington Rand & the Industry they created, 1865 - 1956.
Princeton. p. 344. ISBN 0-691-04807-X .
* Essinger, James (2004). Jacquard's Web: How a Hand-Loom Led to the
Birth of the Information Age. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
* Engelbourg, Saul (1954). International Business Machines: A
Business History (Ph.D.). Columbia University. p. 385. Reprinted by
Arno Press, 1976, from the best available copy. Some text is
* Heide, Lars (2009). Punched-Card Systems and the Early Information
Explosion, 1880-1945. Johns Hopkins. ISBN 0-8018-9143-4 .
* Hollerith, Herman (April 1889). "An Electric Tabulating System".
Columbia University School of Mines. X (16): 238–255.
From the Columbia Univ. History site: This article is the basis for
his 1890 Columbia Ph.D. Extracts reprinted in (Randell, 1982).
* Hollerith, Herman (1890). In connection with the electric
tabulation system which has been adopted by U.S. government for the
work of the census bureau. Ph.D. dissertation. Columbia University
School of Mines.
* Hollerith, Herman (December 1894). "The Electrical Tabulating
Machine". Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. Blackwell
Publishing. 57 (4): 678–682.
JSTOR 2979610 . doi :10.2307/2979610 .
From Randell (1982),"... brief... fascinating article... describes the
way in which tabulators and sorters were used on ... 100 million cards
... 1890 census."
* Truedsell, Leon E. (1965). The Development of Punch Card
Tabulation in the Bureau of the Census 1890-1940. US GPO. Includes
extensive, detailed, description of Hollerith's first machines and
their use for the 1890 census.