Konrad Zuse
Overview
 
Konrad Zuse (ˈkɔnʁat ˈtsuːzə; 1910–1995) was a German
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

  civil engineer and computer
Computer
A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem...

 pioneer. His greatest achievement was the world's first functional program-controlled Turing-complete
Turing completeness
In computability theory, a system of data-manipulation rules is said to be Turing complete or computationally universal if and only if it can be used to simulate any single-taped Turing machine and thus in principle any computer. A classic example is the lambda calculus...

 computer, the Z3, which became operational in May 1941.

Zuse was also noted for the S2 computing machine, considered the first process-controlled computer. He founded one of the earliest computer businesses in 1941, producing the Z4
Z4 (computer)
The Z4 was the world's first commercial digital computer, designed by German engineer Konrad Zuse and built by his company Zuse Apparatebau between 1942 and 1945....

, which became the world's first commercial computer.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
Konrad Zuse (ˈkɔnʁat ˈtsuːzə; 1910–1995) was a German
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

  civil engineer and computer
Computer
A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem...

 pioneer. His greatest achievement was the world's first functional program-controlled Turing-complete
Turing completeness
In computability theory, a system of data-manipulation rules is said to be Turing complete or computationally universal if and only if it can be used to simulate any single-taped Turing machine and thus in principle any computer. A classic example is the lambda calculus...

 computer, the Z3, which became operational in May 1941.

Zuse was also noted for the S2 computing machine, considered the first process-controlled computer. He founded one of the earliest computer businesses in 1941, producing the Z4
Z4 (computer)
The Z4 was the world's first commercial digital computer, designed by German engineer Konrad Zuse and built by his company Zuse Apparatebau between 1942 and 1945....

, which became the world's first commercial computer. In 1946, he designed the first high-level
High-level programming language
A high-level programming language is a programming language with strong abstraction from the details of the computer. In comparison to low-level programming languages, it may use natural language elements, be easier to use, or be from the specification of the program, making the process of...

 programming language
Programming language
A programming language is an artificial language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer. Programming languages can be used to create programs that control the behavior of a machine and/or to express algorithms precisely....

, Plankalkül
Plankalkül
Plankalkül is a computer language designed for engineering purposes by Konrad Zuse between 1943 and 1945. It was the first high-level non-von Neumann programming language to be designed for a computer. Also, notes survive with scribblings about such a plan calculation dating back to 1941...

. In 1969, Zuse suggested the concept of a computation-based universe
Digital physics
In physics and cosmology, digital physics is a collection of theoretical perspectives based on the premise that the universe is, at heart, describable by information, and is therefore computable...

 in his book Rechnender Raum (Calculating Space
Calculating Space
Calculating Space is the title of MIT's English translation of Konrad Zuse's 1969 book Rechnender Raum , the first book on digital physics....

).

Much of his early work was financed by his family and commerce, but after 1939 he was given resources by the Nazi German
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 government. Due to World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, Zuse's work went largely unnoticed in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 and the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. Possibly his first documented influence on a US company was IBM
IBM
International Business Machines Corporation or IBM is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, United States. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware and software, and it offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas...

's option on his patents in 1946.

There is a replica of the Z3, as well as the original Z4, in the Deutsches Museum
Deutsches Museum
The Deutsches Museum in Munich, Germany, is the world's largest museum of technology and science, with approximately 1.5 million visitors per year and about 28,000 exhibited objects from 50 fields of science and technology. The museum was founded on June 28, 1903, at a meeting of the Association...

 in Munich
Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...

. The Deutsches Technikmuseum in Berlin
Berlin
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

 has an exhibition devoted to Zuse, displaying twelve of his machines, including a replica of the Z1
Z1 (computer)
The Z1 was a mechanical computer designed by Konrad Zuse from 1935 to 1936 and built by him from 1936 to 1938. It was a binary electrically driven mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from punched tape....

 and several of Zuse's paintings.

Pre-World War II work and the Z1

Born in Berlin
Berlin
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, on 22 June 1910, he moved with his family in 1912 to Braunsberg, East Prussia
East Prussia
East Prussia is the main part of the region of Prussia along the southeastern Baltic Coast from the 13th century to the end of World War II in May 1945. From 1772–1829 and 1878–1945, the Province of East Prussia was part of the German state of Prussia. The capital city was Königsberg.East Prussia...

, where his father was a postal clerk. Zuse attended the Collegium Hosianum
Collegium Hosianum
The Collegium Hosianum was the Jesuit collegium in Royal Prussia, Poland, founded in 1565, 1566 by Cardinal Stanislaus Hosius in Braniewo . The city of Braniewo was then part of the Diocese of Warmia , a semi-autonomous part of Poland with cardinal Hosius as its prince-bishop...

 in Braunsberg. In 1923, the family moved to Hoyerswerda
Hoyerswerda
Hoyerswerda is the largest city in the district of Bautzen in the German state of Saxony. It is located in Lusatia, a region where many people speak the Sorbian languages in addition to German.-Geography:...

, where he passed his Abitur
Abitur
Abitur is a designation used in Germany, Finland and Estonia for final exams that pupils take at the end of their secondary education, usually after 12 or 13 years of schooling, see also for Germany Abitur after twelve years.The Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife, often referred to as...

 in 1928, qualifying him to enter university.

He enrolled in the Technische Hochschule Berlin-Charlottenburg
Technical University of Berlin
The Technische Universität Berlin is a research university located in Berlin, Germany. Translating the name into English is discouraged by the university, however paraphrasing as Berlin Institute of Technology is recommended by the university if necessary .The TU Berlin was founded...

 and explored both engineering and architecture, but found them boring. Zuse then pursued civil engineering
Civil engineering
Civil engineering is a professional engineering discipline that deals with the design, construction, and maintenance of the physical and naturally built environment, including works like roads, bridges, canals, dams, and buildings...

, graduating in 1935. For a time, he worked for the Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automaker based in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. The automaker was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. In addition to the Ford and Lincoln brands, Ford also owns a small stake in Mazda in Japan and Aston Martin in the UK...

, using his considerable artistic skills in the design of advertisements. He started work as a design engineer at the Henschel aircraft factory in Berlin
Berlin
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

-Schönefeld. This required the performance of many routine calculations by hand, which he found mind-numbingly boring, leading him to dream of doing them by machine.

Working in his parents' apartment in 1936, his first attempt, called the Z1
Z1 (computer)
The Z1 was a mechanical computer designed by Konrad Zuse from 1935 to 1936 and built by him from 1936 to 1938. It was a binary electrically driven mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from punched tape....

, was a floating point
Floating point
In computing, floating point describes a method of representing real numbers in a way that can support a wide range of values. Numbers are, in general, represented approximately to a fixed number of significant digits and scaled using an exponent. The base for the scaling is normally 2, 10 or 16...

 binary mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from a perforated 35 mm film. In 1937, Zuse submitted two patents that anticipated a von Neumann architecture
Von Neumann architecture
The term Von Neumann architecture, aka the Von Neumann model, derives from a computer architecture proposal by the mathematician and early computer scientist John von Neumann and others, dated June 30, 1945, entitled First Draft of a Report on the EDVAC...

. He finished the Z1 in 1938. The Z1 contained some 30,000 metal parts and never worked well due to insufficient mechanical precision. The Z1 and its original blueprint
Blueprint
A blueprint is a type of paper-based reproduction usually of a technical drawing, documenting an architecture or an engineering design. More generally, the term "blueprint" has come to be used to refer to any detailed plan....

s were destroyed during World War II.

Between 1987 and 1989, Zuse recreated the Z1, suffering a heart attack midway through the project. It cost 800,000 DM, and required four individuals (including Zuse) to assemble it. Funding for this retrocomputing
Retrocomputing
Retrocomputing is the use of early computer hardware and software today. Retrocomputing is usually classed as a hobby and recreation rather than a practical application of technology; enthusiasts often collect rare and valuable hardware and software for sentimental reasons...

 project was provided by Siemens
Siemens
Siemens may refer toSiemens, a German family name carried by generations of telecommunications industrialists, including:* Werner von Siemens , inventor, founder of Siemens AG...

 and a consortium of five companies.

The Z2, Z3, and Z4

Zuse completed his work entirely independently of other leading computer scientists and mathematicians of his day. Between 1936 and 1945, he was in near-total intellectual isolation. In 1939, Zuse was called to military service, where he was given the resources to ultimately build the Z2. The Z2 was a revised version of the Z1 using telephone relay
Relay
A relay is an electrically operated switch. Many relays use an electromagnet to operate a switching mechanism mechanically, but other operating principles are also used. Relays are used where it is necessary to control a circuit by a low-power signal , or where several circuits must be controlled...

s. In 1941, he started a company, Zuse Apparatebau (Zuse Apparatus Construction), to manufacture his machines.

Improving on the basic Z2 machine, he built the Z3 in 1941. It was a binary
Binary numeral system
The binary numeral system, or base-2 number system, represents numeric values using two symbols, 0 and 1. More specifically, the usual base-2 system is a positional notation with a radix of 2...

 22-bit floating point
Floating point
In computing, floating point describes a method of representing real numbers in a way that can support a wide range of values. Numbers are, in general, represented approximately to a fixed number of significant digits and scaled using an exponent. The base for the scaling is normally 2, 10 or 16...

 calculator featuring programmability with loops but without conditional jumps, with memory and a calculation unit based on telephone relays. The telephone relays used in his machines were largely collected from discarded stock. Despite the absence of conditional jumps, the Z3 was a Turing complete computer (ignoring the fact that no physical computer can be truly Turing complete because of limited storage size). However, Turing-completeness was never considered by Zuse (who had practical applications in mind) and only demonstrated in 1998 (see History of computing hardware
History of computing hardware
The history of computing hardware is the record of the ongoing effort to make computer hardware faster, cheaper, and capable of storing more data....

). The first electronic computer (though not programmable) was the Atanasoff machine developed at Iowa State University during 1939-41.

The Z3, the first fully operational electromechanical computer, was partially financed by German government-supported DVL (Deutsche Versuchsanstalt für Luftfahrt, i.e. German Research Institute for Aviation), which wanted their extensive calculations automated. A request by his co-worker Helmut Schreyer
Helmut Schreyer
Helmut Theodor Schreyer was a German inventor. He is mostly known for his work on the Z3, one of the first computers....

 — who had helped Zuse build the Z3 prototype in 1938 — for government funding for an electronic successor to the Z3 was denied as "strategically unimportant".

In 1937, Schreyer had advised Zuse to use vacuum tube
Vacuum tube
In electronics, a vacuum tube, electron tube , or thermionic valve , reduced to simply "tube" or "valve" in everyday parlance, is a device that relies on the flow of electric current through a vacuum...

s as switching elements; Zuse at this time considered it a crazy idea ("Schnapsidee" in his own words). Zuse's company (with the Z1, Z2 and Z3) was destroyed in 1945 by an Allied air attack. The partially finished, relay-based Z4
Z4 (computer)
The Z4 was the world's first commercial digital computer, designed by German engineer Konrad Zuse and built by his company Zuse Apparatebau between 1942 and 1945....

, which Zuse had begun constructing in 1942, had been moved to a safe location earlier. Work on the Z4 could not continue in the extreme privation of post-war Germany, and it was not until 1949 that he was able to resume work on it. He showed it to the mathematician Eduard Stiefel
Eduard Stiefel
Eduard L. Stiefel was a Swiss mathematician. Together with Cornelius Lanczos and Magnus Hestenes, he invented the conjugate gradient method, and gave what is now understood to be a partial construction of the Stiefel–Whitney classes of a real vector bundle, thus co-founding the study of...

 of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
ETH Zurich
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich or ETH Zürich is an engineering, science, technology, mathematics and management university in the City of Zurich, Switzerland....

 (Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zürich) who ordered one in 1950. On 8 November 1949, Zuse KG was founded. The Z4 was delivered to ETH Zurich on 12 July 1950, and proved very reliable.

While Zuse never became a member of the Nazi Party, he is not known to have expressed any doubts or qualms about working for the Nazi war effort. Much later, he suggested that in modern times, the best scientists and engineers usually have to choose between either doing their work for more or less questionable business and military interests in a Faustian bargain
Deal with the Devil
Deal With The Devil is the fifth studio album by the American heavy metal band Lizzy Borden released in 2000 .A return to form, featuring a cover by Todd McFarlane.2 covers were recorded...

, or not pursuing their line of work at all.

S1 and S2

In 1940, the German government began funding him through the Aerodynamische Versuchsanstalt (AVA, Aerodynamic Research Institute, forerunner of the DLR
German Aerospace Center
The German Aerospace Center is the national centre for aerospace, energy and transportation research of the Federal Republic of Germany. It has multiple locations throughout Germany. Its headquarters are located in Cologne. It is engaged in a wide range of research and development projects in...

), which used his work for the production of glide bomb
Glide bomb
A glide bomb is an aerial bomb modified with aerodynamic surfaces to modify its flight path from a purely ballistic one to a flatter, gliding, one. This extends the range between the launch aircraft and the target. Glide bombs are often fitted with control systems, allowing the controlling aircraft...

s. Zuse built the S1 and S2 computing machines, which were special purpose devices which computed aerodynamic corrections to the wings of radio-controlled flying bombs. The S2 featured an integrated analog-to-digital converter under program control, making it the first process-controlled computer.

These machines contributed to the Henschel Werke Hs 293
Henschel Hs 293
The Henschel Hs 293 was a World War II German anti-ship guided missile: a radio-controlled glide bomb with a rocket engine slung underneath it. It was designed by Herbert A. Wagner.- History :...

 and Hs 294
Henschel Hs 294
The Henschel Hs 294 was a guided air-to-sea missile developed by Germany during World War II, in 1943. It was a further development of the Henschel Hs 293, but was of an elongated, more streamlined shape. When launched from an aircraft, it was guided to its target by remote control...

 guided missiles developed by the German military between 1941 and 1945, which were the precursors to the modern cruise missile
Cruise missile
A cruise missile is a guided missile that carries an explosive payload and is propelled, usually by a jet engine, towards a land-based or sea-based target. Cruise missiles are designed to deliver a large warhead over long distances with high accuracy...

. The circuit design of the S1 was the predecessor of Zuse's Z11. Zuse believed that these machines had been captured by occupying Soviet troops in 1945.

Plankalkül

While working on his Z4 computer, Zuse realised that programming in machine code
Machine code
Machine code or machine language is a system of impartible instructions executed directly by a computer's central processing unit. Each instruction performs a very specific task, typically either an operation on a unit of data Machine code or machine language is a system of impartible instructions...

 was too complicated. After the progress of the war induced him to flee Berlin for the rural Allgäu
Allgäu
The Allgäu is a southern German region in Swabia. It covers the south of Bavarian Swabia and southeastern Baden-Württemberg. The region stretches from the prealpine lands up to the Alps...

, where he could not do any hardware work, he designed the first high-level programming language, Plankalkül ("Plan Calculus"), in 1945/6. This was first published in 1948, although not in its entirety until 1972. It was a theoretical contribution, since the language was not implemented in his lifetime and did not directly influence subsequent early languages. Heinz Rutishauser
Heinz Rutishauser
Heinz Rutishauser was a Swiss mathematician and a pioneer of modern numerical mathematics and computer science.- Life :...

, one of the inventors of ALGOL
ALGOL
ALGOL is a family of imperative computer programming languages originally developed in the mid 1950s which greatly influenced many other languages and became the de facto way algorithms were described in textbooks and academic works for almost the next 30 years...

, wrote: "The very first attempt to devise an algorithmic language was undertaken in 1948 by K. Zuse. His notation was quite general, but the proposal never attained the consideration it deserved." No compiler
Compiler
A compiler is a computer program that transforms source code written in a programming language into another computer language...

 or interpreter
Interpreter (computing)
In computer science, an interpreter normally means a computer program that executes, i.e. performs, instructions written in a programming language...

 was available for Plankalkül until a team from the Free University of Berlin
Free University of Berlin
Freie Universität Berlin is one of the leading and most prestigious research universities in Germany and continental Europe. It distinguishes itself through its modern and international character. It is the largest of the four universities in Berlin. Research at the university is focused on the...

 implemented one in 2000.

Marriage and family

Konrad Zuse married Gisela Brandes in January 1945 - employing a carriage, himself dressed in tailcoat and top hat and with Gisela in a wedding veil, for Zuse attached importance to a "noble ceremony". Their son Horst
Horst Zuse
Horst Zuse is a professor of Computer Science at the Technical University of Berlin and the son of the noted computer scientist Konrad Zuse.He first studied electrical engineering...

, the first of five children, was born in November 1945.

Zuse the entrepreneur

In 1946, Zuse founded one of the earliest computer companies: the Zuse-Ingenieurbüro Hopferau. Capital was raised through ETH Zurich
ETH Zurich
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich or ETH Zürich is an engineering, science, technology, mathematics and management university in the City of Zurich, Switzerland....

 and an IBM option on Zuse's patents.

Zuse founded another company, Zuse KG in Haunetal-Neukirchen
Haunetal
Haunetal is a community in Hersfeld-Rotenburg district in eastern Hesse, Germany. Haunetal is the district’s southernmost municipality.-Location:...

 in 1949; in 1957 the company’s head office moved to Bad Hersfeld
Bad Hersfeld
The festival and spa town of Bad Hersfeld is the district seat of Hersfeld-Rotenburg district in northeastern Hesse, Germany, roughly 50 km southeast of Kassel....

. The Z4
Z4 (computer)
The Z4 was the world's first commercial digital computer, designed by German engineer Konrad Zuse and built by his company Zuse Apparatebau between 1942 and 1945....

 was finished and delivered to the ETH Zurich
ETH Zurich
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich or ETH Zürich is an engineering, science, technology, mathematics and management university in the City of Zurich, Switzerland....

, Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland name of one of the Swiss cantons. ; ; ; or ), in its full name the Swiss Confederation , is a federal republic consisting of 26 cantons, with Bern as the seat of the federal authorities. The country is situated in Western Europe,Or Central Europe depending on the definition....

 in September 1950. At that time, it was the only working computer in continental Europe, and the second computer in the world to be sold, only beaten by the BINAC
BINAC
BINAC, the Binary Automatic Computer, was an early electronic computer designed for Northrop Aircraft Company by the Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation in 1949. Eckert and Mauchly, though they had started the design of EDVAC at the University of Pennsylvania, chose to leave and start EMCC, the...

, which never worked properly after it was delivered. Other computers, all numbered with a leading Z, up to Z43, were built by Zuse and his company. Notable are the Z11, which was sold to the optics industry and to universities, and the Z22, the first computer with a memory based on magnetic storage.

By 1967, the Zuse KG had built a total of 251 computers. Due to financial problems, the company was then sold to Siemens
Siemens AG
Siemens AG is a German multinational conglomerate company headquartered in Munich, Germany. It is the largest Europe-based electronics and electrical engineering company....

.

Calculating Space

In 1967, Zuse also suggested that the universe
Universe
The Universe is commonly defined as the totality of everything that exists, including all matter and energy, the planets, stars, galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space. Definitions and usage vary and similar terms include the cosmos, the world and nature...

 itself is running on a cellular automaton
Cellular automaton
A cellular automaton is a discrete model studied in computability theory, mathematics, physics, complexity science, theoretical biology and microstructure modeling. It consists of a regular grid of cells, each in one of a finite number of states, such as "On" and "Off"...

 or similar computational structure (digital physics
Digital physics
In physics and cosmology, digital physics is a collection of theoretical perspectives based on the premise that the universe is, at heart, describable by information, and is therefore computable...

); in 1969, he published the book Rechnender Raum (translated into English as Calculating Space
Calculating Space
Calculating Space is the title of MIT's English translation of Konrad Zuse's 1969 book Rechnender Raum , the first book on digital physics....

). This idea has attracted a lot of attention, since there is no physical evidence against Zuse's thesis. Edward Fredkin
Edward Fredkin
Edward Fredkin is an early pioneer of digital physics. In recent work, he uses the term digital philosophy . His primary contributions include his work on reversible computing and cellular automata...

 (1980s), Jürgen Schmidhuber
Jürgen Schmidhuber
Jürgen Schmidhuber is a computer scientist and artist known for his work on machine learning, universal Artificial Intelligence , artificial neural networks, digital physics, and low-complexity art. His contributions also include generalizations of Kolmogorov complexity and the Speed Prior...

 (1990s), Stephen Wolfram
Stephen Wolfram
Stephen Wolfram is a British scientist and the chief designer of the Mathematica software application and the Wolfram Alpha computational knowledge engine.- Biography :...

 (A New Kind of Science
A New Kind of Science
A New Kind of Science is a book by Stephen Wolfram, published in 2002. It contains an empirical and systematic study of computational systems such as cellular automata...

) and others have expanded on it.

After he retired, he focused on his hobby, painting. Zuse died on 18 December 1995 in Hünfeld
Hünfeld
Hünfeld is a town in the district of Fulda, in Hesse, Germany. It is situated 16 km northeast of Fulda.-Notable people:* Wilm Hosenfeld *Johann Leonhard Pfaff , bishop of Fulda* Konrad Zuse -Transport:...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

, near Fulda
Fulda
Fulda is a city in Hesse, Germany; it is located on the river Fulda and is the administrative seat of the Fulda district .- Early Middle Ages :...

.

Awards and honours

Zuse received several awards for his work:
  • Werner-von-Siemens-Ring in 1964 (together with Fritz Leonhardt
    Fritz Leonhardt
    Fritz Leonhardt was a German structural engineer who made major contributions to 20th century bridge engineering, especially in the development of cable-stayed bridges...

     and Walter Schottky)
  • Harry H. Goode Memorial Award in 1965 (together with George Stibitz
    George Stibitz
    George Robert Stibitz is internationally recognized as one of the fathers of the modern digital computer...

    )
  • Bundesverdienstkreuz
    Bundesverdienstkreuz
    The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany is the only general state decoration of the Federal Republic of Germany. It has existed since 7 September 1951, and between 3,000 and 5,200 awards are given every year across all classes...

    in 1972 - Great Cross of Merit
  • Computer History Museum
    Computer History Museum
    The Computer History Museum is a museum established in 1996 in Mountain View, California, USA. The Museum is dedicated to preserving and presenting the stories and artifacts of the information age, and exploring the computing revolution and its impact on our lives.-History:The museum's origins...

     Fellow Award
    in 1999


The Zuse Institute Berlin
Zuse Institute Berlin
The Zuse Institute Berlin is a research institute for applied mathematics and computer science in Berlin....

 is named in his honour.

Zuse Year 2010

The 100th anniversary of the birth of this computer pioneer was celebrated by exhibitions, lectures and workshops to remember his life and work and to bring attention to the importance of his invention to the digital age. The movie Tron: Legacy, which revolves around a world inside a computer system, features a character named Zuse, presumably in honour of Konrad Zuse.

Literature

  • Konrad Zuse: The Computer – My Life, Springer Verlag, ISBN 3-540-56453-5, ISBN 0-387-56453-5
  • Jürgen Alex, Hermann Flessner, Wilhelm Mons, Horst Zuse: Konrad Zuse: Der Vater des Computers. Parzeller, Fulda 2000, ISBN 3-7900-0317-4
  • Raul Rojas (Hrsg.): Die Rechenmaschinen von Konrad Zuse. Springer, Berlin 1998, ISBN 3-540-63461-4.
  • Jürgen Alex: Wege und Irrwege des Konrad Zuse. In: Spektrum der Wissenschaft (dt. Ausgabe von Scientific American) 1/1997, ISSN 0170-2971.
  • Hadwig Dorsch: Der erste Computer. Konrad Zuses Z1 – Berlin 1936. Beginn und Entwicklung einer technischen Revolution. Mit Beiträgen von Konrad Zuse und Otto Lührs. Museum für Verkehr und Technik, Berlin 1989.
  • Clemens Kieser: „Ich bin zu faul zum Rechnen“ – Konrad Zuses Computer Z22 im Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie Karlsruhe. In: Denkmalpflege in Baden-Württemberg, 4/34/2005, Esslingen am Neckar, S. 180-184, ISSN 0342-0027.
  • Arno Peters: Was ist und wie verwirklicht sich Computer-Sozialismus: Gespräche mit Konrad Zuse. Verlag Neues Leben, Berlin 2000, ISBN 3-355-01510-5.
  • Paul Janositz: Informatik und Konrad Zuse: Der Pionier des Computerbaus in Europa – Das verkannte Genie aus Adlershof. In: Der Tagesspiegel Nr. 19127, Berlin, 9. März 2006, Beilage Seite B3.
  • Jürgen Alex: Zum Einfluß elementarer Sätze der mathematischen Logik bei Alfred Tarski auf die drei Computerkonzepte des Konrad Zuse. TU Chemnitz 2006.
  • Jürgen Alex: Zur Entstehung des Computers – von Alfred Tarski zu Konrad Zuse. VDI-Verlag, Düsseldorf 2007, ISBN 978-3-18-150051-4, ISSN 0082-2361.

See also

  • Z1
    Z1 (computer)
    The Z1 was a mechanical computer designed by Konrad Zuse from 1935 to 1936 and built by him from 1936 to 1938. It was a binary electrically driven mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from punched tape....

  • Z2
  • Z3
  • Z4
    Z4 (computer)
    The Z4 was the world's first commercial digital computer, designed by German engineer Konrad Zuse and built by his company Zuse Apparatebau between 1942 and 1945....

  • Z5
    Z5 (computer)
    The Z5 was a computer built by Zuse from 1950 to 1952 and built by him from 1952 to 1953.The Z5 is the successor of the Z4, and is much more compact and powerful. Zuse implemented the machine with relays, since vacuum tubes were too unreliable at the time. The Z5 used the same princips as the Z4...


  • Z11
  • Z22
  • Digital philosophy
    Digital philosophy
    Digital philosophy is a direction in philosophy and cosmology advocated by certain mathematicians and theoretical physicists, e.g., Gregory Chaitin, Edward Fredkin, Stephen Wolfram, and Konrad Zuse ....

  • John Vincent Atanasoff
    John Vincent Atanasoff
    John Vincent Atanasoff was an American physicist and inventor.The 1973 decision of the patent suit Honeywell v. Sperry Rand named him the inventor of the first automatic electronic digital computer...

  • German inventors and discoverers
    German inventors and discoverers
    This is a list of German inventors and discoverers. The following list comprises people from Germany or German-speaking Europe, also of people of predominantly German heritage, in alphabetical order of the surname. The main section includes existing articles, indicated by blue links, and possibly...



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