The First Computer “Bug”

Did you ever wonder why a problem with a computer is called a bug?  Well, according to Admiral Grace Hopper of the US Navy, it happened on September 9, 1945.  Back then, computers took up an entire room and there were many tubes.  So on that day, a moth flew into the room and into the wires/tubes and shorted the circuits.  In the official log, the moth was actually taped to the page and the computer problem was notated as being “caused by the bug”.

Admiral Hopper was one of the first programmers on the Harvard Mark I computer in 1944.  The term “bug” had been used before in engineering projects, but this is the first recorded computer bug in history.  Just imagine if they had use the word moth when describing the original problem?  Would we be “de-mothing” computer programs today?

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