Charles Babbage
Will Braxton
Charles Babbage was born December 26th 1792. His father was named Benjamin Babbage, and was a banker. His mother, Betsy Plumleigh Babbage, was a school teacher. As a young kid Babbage had many problems with illness. He was still about three years old while being sick, and then again at around age ten. Babbage was not a very lucky child, but as he progressed in life, he helped the world quite a bit.


Babbage’s schooling was very good. He was lucky enough to have a rich father who could afford to send him to a private school. He had a private school education throughout his entire life, and then when college came he attended Trinity College, in Cambridge, England in 1810. Four years later in 1814 Babbage married Georgiana Whitmore, and left Cambridge, moving into London with his wife.

In 1819 Babbage was working on a small difference engine, and finished it in 1822. This little “difference device” was nearly the beginning of computers. Babbage is the creator of the idea of a modern-day computer. Babbage envisioned a device that could print out the results of what you put in. Babbage showed what his machine could do by calculating successive terms of the sequence n2 + n + 41.

De Prony, a French mathematician, influenced Babbage a lot. De Prony told the French Government to use one big machine so they could save money, energy, and time. When the French Government was using many different men with many different calculators trying to do the work. On July 13, 1823 Charles Babbage won a gold medal for making the difference engine. The medal was from the Astronomical Society.

Babbage never finished anything he started. He had many great ideas, and tried to make them happen but never got around to finishing them. All the concepts were good, and he got credit for that. They would have been much better if he completed them. The difference engine he made was made in London, and can now be seen in The Science Museum.

Babbage was looked at like a mad scientist: he didn't finish anything because in the midst of making something, he sprung an idea that sounded better. The good thing about his projects was in his plans they were very detailed so not just he could understand them. The fact that his plans were detailed lead other scientists to taking on the ideas, making them, and succeeding. Babbage started with simple Calculating Engines, to Difference Engines, to Analytical Engines. He had so many ideas that he couldn’t get around to making everything. That doesn’t matter at all because by his plans and ideas he helped create the modern day computer and calculators.

In 1831 Babbage founded the British Association for the Advancement of Science. Babbage was an author, and wrote about his sciences and inventions. In 1832 Babbage started to make the Difference Engine, but then since it wasn’t coming along the government stopped funding for it. Later in 1832 Babbage published a book called; Economy of Manufactures and Machinery. In 1833 Babbage began to work on his Analytical Engine, hoping to finish a mathematical task. Later in 1833, Ada Augusta started to document what Babbage was doing.

On October 18, 1871 Charles Babbage died in London. Babbage died at his house of old age. He was a great scientist that contributed to the world, London, and many other people. Some wondered if Babbage’s plans would have worked if he had actually made them. At the Science Museum in London in 1985 they started to build Babbage’s machinery. Some work and were good inventions adding to the modern technology. Babbage created many machines to help the future of science. He inspired many people and wrote detailed plans about how to make his machinery. He was a great scientist that gave us our modern day computer.

Works Cited

The Babbage Pages. J J O’Connor and E F Robertson , n.d. Web. 23 Feb. 2010. <http://projects.exeter.ac.uk/‌babbage/‌biograph.html>.
gap-system. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Feb. 2010. <http://www.gap-system.org/‌~history/‌Biographies/‌Babbage.html>.
Idea Finder. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Feb. 2010. <http://www.ideafinder.com/‌history/‌inventors/‌babbage.htm>.
“Mr. Charles Babbage.” The Times 23 Oct. 1871: n. pag. Web. 23 Feb. 2010. <http://books.google.com/‌books?id=0CMYAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA57&dq=charles+babbage&as_brr=1#v=onepage&q=charles%20babbage&f=false>.