The Best Explanation of a Nanosecond
I got this in an email this morning. I had never seen it until then and I had not heard of Grace Hopper (or at least remember hearing about her.). It turns out that she had quite the career from college professor, working on the first computer to joining the US Navy at the age of 37 and fulfilling a 43 year career to retire as a Rear Admiral (Lower Half). She joined the Navy in 1944 driven to join by World War II. This is a video of her explaining the length of a nanosecond – how much distance light can travel in a nanosecond.
The beginning of the Wikipedia posting on Grace Hopper:
Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906 – January 1, 1992) was an American computer scientist and United States Navy officer. A pioneer in the field, she was one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer, and developed the first compiler for a computer programming language. She conceptualized the idea of machine-independent programming languages, which led to the development of COBOL, one of the first modern programming languages. She is credited with popularizing the term “debugging” for fixing computer glitches (motivated by an actual moth removed from the computer, and not by her). Owing to the breadth of her accomplishments and her naval rank, she is sometimes referred to as “Amazing Grace.” The U.S. Navy destroyer USS Hopper (DDG-70) is named for her, as was the Cray XE6 ”Hopper” supercomputer atNERSC.
- New Nanosecond Technology, Could It Be The End Of Privacy? Or Is This Fear Mongering Hype? (lightatheart.wordpress.com)
- Grace Murray Hopper – the “grandmother of COBOL” (eclecticatticblog.com)
- Gail Carmichael: Register now for the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing! (compscigail.blogspot.com)