The Origin of the Word Bug
Ever wondered about the origins of the term "bugs" as applied to computer
technology? U.S. Navy Admiral Grace
Murray Hopper has firsthand explanation.
She was on duty until 1992, when she died being. Being pioneer in
computer technology during World War II. At the C.W. Post Center of
Long Island University, Hopper told a group of Long Island public school
administrators that the first computer "bug" was a real bug -- a moth.
At Harvard one August night in 1945, Hopper and her associates were working
on the "granddaddy" of modern computers, the Mark I. "Things were going
badly; there was something wrong in one of the circuits of the long
glass-enclosed computer," she said. "Finally, someone located the
trouble spot and, using ordinary tweezers, removed the problem, a two-inch
moth. From then on, when anything went wrong with a computer, we said it
had bugs in it." Hopper said that when the veracity of her story was
questioned recently, "I referred them to my 1945 log book, now in the
collection of Naval Surface Weapons Center, and they found the remains of
that moth taped to the page in question."
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Last modified 12:28PM 10/17/95
Created by John Neystadt