## Boole, Shannon and the Electronic Computer

A reblog to mark the centenary of the birth of Claude Shannon, pioneer of information theory..

Photo of George Boole by Samuel Prout Newcombe

Source: Wikimedia Commons

In 1847, the self-taught English Mathematician George Boole (1815–1864), whose two hundredth birthday we celebrated last year, published a very small book, little more than a pamphlet, entitled *Mathematical Analysis of Logic*. This was the first modern book on symbolic or mathematical logic and contained Boole’s first efforts towards an algebraic logic of classes.

Although very ingenious and only the second published non-standard algebra, Hamilton’s Quaternions was the first, Boole’s work attracted very little attention outside of his close circle of friends. His friend, Augustus De Morgan, would falsely claim that his own *Formal Logic* Boole’s work were published on the same day, they were actually published several days apart, but their almost simultaneous appearance does signal a growing interest in formal logic in the early nineteenth century. Boole went on to publish a much improved and expanded…

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April 30, 2016 at 6:02 pm

Peter, you once misspelled Shannon as Shandon.

April 30, 2016 at 6:05 pm

Thank you Miro! Now corrected. I did that on my phone and it’s so hard to type accurately…