14 Jun 1555

Juanelo Turriano

The first android in the Western World, a completely mechanical figure which simulated a living human or animal, operating with an apparently responsive action, is believed to have been constructed in 1525 by Hans Bullmann (?-1535) of Nuremberg, Germany. Bullmann actually reportedly produced a number of extremely ingenious figures of..Read More

14 Jun 1580

Hans Schlottheim

Starting from 1580, Hans Schlottheim, a German goldsmith, watchmaker, craftsman, and above all a mechanic, working in Augsburg, created quite a few wonderful automata, several of which managed to survive to our time. Schlottheim’s automata had been known to feature vignette scenes populated by animated figurines, music-producing mechanisms, hourly chimes,..Read More

14 Jun 1588

Agostino Ramelli

The Italian military engineer Agostino Ramelli (1531–ca. 1610) produced a remarkable illustrated book in 1588 describing a large number of machines that he devised, called Le diverse et artificiose machine del Capitano Agostino Ramelli (The various and ingenious machines of Captain Agostino Ramelli). The book, published in Paris at his..Read More

01 Jul 1614

Napier’s Logarithms

In July 1614 in Edinburgh, Scotland, was published a small book (57 pages of explanatory matter and 90 pages of tables) which will make a key advance in the use of mathematics. The book was Mirifici Logarithmorum Canonis Descriptio (Description of the Marvelous Canon of Logarithms), written by a Scotsman—John..Read More

04 Dec 1615

Salomon de Caus

Jean Salomon de Caus was a French Huguenot engineer and scientist, who spent all his life moving across Europe. He worked as a hydraulic engineer and architect under Louis XIII from 1623 till his death in Paris in 1626. de Caus also was in service of the Prince of Wales..Read More

27 Mar 1616

William Pratt

A simple calculating device with the fancy name Arithmetical Jewell was designed by William Pratt in the middle 1610s, and described in the book of the same name (The Arithmeticall Jewell: or the use of a small Table Whereby is speedily wrought, as well all Arithmetical workes in whole Numbers,..Read More

10 Oct 1617

Napier’s Bones

At the end of 1617 in Edinburgh after the death of John Napier, was published (in the Latin language, which was a common practice then) his small book—Rabdologiae seu Numerationis per Virgulas libri duo. Looking to ease his own difficulties in calculating logarithmic tables, and impatient with the tedious and..Read More

04 Apr 1623

Wilhelm Schickard

One of the most important events in the life of the modest deacon of Nürtingen, Wilhelm Schickard, was his meeting in October 1617, with the great astronomer Johann Kepler. Obviously, during this meeting, Kepler immediately recognized the massive intellect of the young Wilhelm and encouraged his occasions with sciences, which..Read More

03 Apr 1642

Blaise Pascal

The Roulette ou Roue Paschaline (celebrated as Pascaline in France and abroad) of the great french scientist Blaise Pascal was for more than three centuries considered the first mechanical calculator in the world, as the Rechenuhr of Wilhelm Schickard was not widely known until the late 1950s. Pascal most probably..Read More

04 Apr 1651

Thomas Hobbes

The prominent English philosopher Thomas Hobbes is considered by some historians as one of the prophets of AI (Artificial Intelligence), primarily for his proclamation By ratiocination, I mean computation, in his 1651 book Leviathan or The Matter, Forme and Power of a Common Wealth Ecclesiasticall and Civil, commonly called simply..Read More

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