July 21, 2005 One of the most important works in scientific history was published in July 60 years ago – an article in The Atlantic Monthly entitled “AS WE MAY THINK”. Written by Vannevar Bush, the article describes the “memex” – a theoretical analog computer designed from the cutting edge technologies of the day to enable access to large amounts of information. The machine and linking systems Bush describe are remarkably similar to today’s hypertext and Ted Nelson who coined the term, hypertext" in the 1960's, acknowledges his debt to Bush. Bush was a visionary and his work in creating the environment which nurtured the development of what became the internet is well documented in several excellent articles in Wired magazine and ibiblio. "Consider a future device for individual use, which is a sort of mechanized private file and library. It needs a name, and to coin one at random, ``memex'' will do. A memex is a device in which an individual stores all his books, records, and communications, and which is mechanized so that it may be consulted with exceeding speed and flexibility. It is an enlarged intimate supplement to his memory." - Vannevar Bush The original article can be read for free on-line at the Atlantic Monthly which is still published. VIA SLASHDOT
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