Guide to the Victor W. D. Hale Papers

Elizabeth Borchardt
Computer History Museum
1401 N. Shoreline Blvd.
Mountain View, California 94043
Phone: (650) 810-1010
Email: research@computerhistory.org
URL: http://www.computerhistory.org
© 2007
Computer History Museum. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Victor W. D. Hale Papers

Collection number: X3115.2005

Computer History Museum
Processed by:
Elizabeth Borchardt
Date Completed:
September 17, 2007
Encoded by:
Elizabeth Borchardt
© 2007 Computer History Museum. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Guide to the Victor W. D. Hale Papers
Dates: 1948-1949
Collection number: X3115.2005
Creator: Hale, Victor W. D.
Collection Size: .25 linear feet 15 folders
Repository: Computer History Museum
Mountain View, CA 94043
Abstract: The Victor W. D. Hale papers consist of two series - one devoted to the Conference on high-speed automatic calculating machines held at the Cambridge University Mathematical Laboratory June 22-25, 1949, and one consisting of papers relating to EDSAC from both before and after the conference.
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Access

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

The Computer History Museum can only claim physical ownership of the collection. Users are responsible for satisfying any claims of the copyright holder. Permission to copy or publish any portion of the Computer History Museum's collection must be given by the Computer History Museum.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of Item], [Date], Victor W. D. Hale papers, Lot X3115.2005, Box [#], Folder [#], Computer History Museum

Provenance

The Victor W. D. Hale papers were purchased by the Computer History Museum at the Origins of Cyberspace held by Christie's auction house in 2005.

Biography / Administrative History

Victor W. D. Hale worked as a code breaker at Bletchley Park, England during World War II. After the war, he was associated with Trinity College, but it is not certain in what capacity (student or professor). In the fall of 1949, he joined the Department of Mathematics at the University of Hull. In the early 1960s, he moved to York University where he was a Senior Lecturer and was head of the department from 1966 to 1967. He retired in 1987 and died in 2004.

Historical Note

The "Conference on high-speed automatic calculating machines" took place at the Cambridge University Mathematical Laboratory June 22-25, 1949. The conference was hosted by the laboratory's director, Maurice V. Wilkes. Approximately 100 scholars attended the four day conference. The following are some of the session presented during the conference:
  • Survey of the present position of work on automatic digital computers
  • The EDSAC
  • Demonstration of the EDSAC
  • The Automatic Relay Computer
  • Cathode Ray Tube Storage
  • Discussion on programming and coding
  • French computing machine projects
  • Some routines involving large integers
  • Checking processes for large routines
  • Discussion of permanent and semi-permanent storage facilities
  • Discussion on checking procedure and circuits
  • Computing machines: plans, projects and general ideas

Scope and Content of Collection

The Victor W. D. Hale papers are grouped into two series. The Conference papers series contains papers relating to the Conference on high-speed automatic calculating machines held at the Cambridge University Mathematical Laboratory June 22-25, 1949. Of note is the information given to attendees such as a list of those attending, printouts from EDSAC, copies of papers presented in some of the sessions, and handwritten notes by Victor Hale.
The EDSAC papers series contains papers relating to EDSAC itself from both before and after the conference. Of note are handwritten notes of a routine to calculate square roots and the accompanying EDSAC coding sheets by Victor Hale, which may be the earliest coding notes and sheets for EDSAC extant, as well as blueprint diagrams of EDSAC's order interpretation sent to Hale by Eric Mutch.

Arrangement

  • Series 1. Conference Papers
  • Series 2. EDSAC Papers

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Cambridge University Mathematical Laboratory
Cambridge computer conference
Computers
Conference on high-speed automatic calculating machines
EDSAC (Computer)
Electronic Digital Computers
Hale, Victor W. D.
Wilkes, Maurice V.


Collection Contents

Box 1

Conference Papers 1949

Creator: Hale, Victor W. D.
Physical Description: 9 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

Papers relating to the Conference on high-speed automatic calculating machines held at the Cambridge University Mathematical Laboratory June 22-25, 1949. Of note is the information given to attendees such as a list of those attending, printouts from EDSAC, copies of papers presented in some of the sessions, and handwritten notes by Victor Hale.
 

102683935 Cambridge computer conference attendee information packet June 1949

 

102683932 EDSAC printouts of tables of square and prime numbers from Cambridge computer conference 1949

 

102683929 Handwritten notes from Cambridge computer conference sessions taken by Victor W. D. Hale June 1949

 

102683936 List of the Cambridge computer conference attendees June 1949

 

102683937 Personal invitation to a reception during the Cambridge computer conference June 1949

 

102683934 Preliminary letter and program from the Cambridge computer conference 1949

 

102683930 References on recent advances in calculating machines June 1949

 

102683933 Short paper titled "The Co-ordinating Orders" indicating the need for sub-routines 1949

 

102683931 Three papers from session of the Cambridge computer conference 1949

Box 1

EDSAC Papers 1948-1949

Creator: Hale, Victor W. D.
Physical Description: 6 folders

Series Scope and Content Summary

Papers relating to EDSAC itself from both before and after the conference. Of note are handwritten notes of a routine to calculate square roots and the accompanying EDSAC coding sheets by Victor Hale, which may be the earliest coding notes and sheets for EDSAC extant, as well as blueprint diagrams of EDSAC’s order interpretation sent to Hale by Eric Mutch.
 

102683938 EDSAC Order Code edition 4 July 1948 July 1948

 

102683940 EDSAC coding sheets for Victor Hale's routine for calculating square roots 1948 ca.

 

102683939 Handwritten notes on a routine for calculating square roots on the EDSAC 1948 ca.

 

102683941 Letter from Eric Mutch concerning EDSAC order interpretation including EDSAC order code specifications November 26, 1949

 

102683942 Letter from Eric Mutch with detailed order interpretation information December 8, 1949

 

102683943 Blueprint diagrams of EDSAC's half minor cycles, stage 1, stage 2, and an untitled flow chart