HERMAN HOLLERITH Biography - Famous Scientists


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Herman Hollerith                                                                                             
Birth: February 29, 1860 in Buffalo, New York                                                                 
Death: November 17, 1929                                                                                     
Nationality: American                                                                                         
Herman Hollerith, American inventor, born in Buffalo, New York, and educated at                               
Columbia University, who devised a system of encoding data on cards through a                                 
series of punched holes. This system proved useful in statistical work and was                               
important in the development of the digital computer. Hollerith's machine, used                               
in the 1890 U.S. census, "read" the cards by passing them through electrical                                 
contacts. Closed circuits, which indicated hole positions, could then be                                     
selected and counted. His Tabulating Machine Company (1896) was a predecessor to                             
the International Business Machines Corporation.                                                             
The machine was used in the 1890 census,                                                                     
and he started the Tabulating Machine Company in 1896 to work on new and improved versions of the machine,   
which he eventually sold to other countries for use in their census tabulations.                             
He merged the company with others to become the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (1911),               
and changed the name to International Business Machines Company in 1924.