A moth was the original computer bug!

21 Sep
21 september, 2009

Over the years, the word ”bug” has laid claim to many meanings. Among them are: an order of insects, any small arthropod (cockroach, louse, etc.), a bacteria or virus, a tiny microphone, an enthusiast or devotee, and to annoy someone.

But the meaning of a fault in a machine or software program is most interesting because of its literal derivation. The finding of the first “computer bug” was exactly that. When the Department of the US Navy’s Mark II Aiken Relay was being tested at Harvard University on 9 September, 1945, test personnel found a moth trapped between points at Relay #70, Panel F.

This event was duly entered into the computer log as “First actual case of a bug being found”, and the moth was taped to the log page. Personnel then later described the task of removing the moth as “debugging a computer program.”

An account of this can be found here along with a photograph of the log page complete with the offending moth.

Of course, you can take it for granted that when Pyramid Communication releases its websites, e-shopping, e-training and other internet programs created for its customers, you won’t find a single bug trapped between the bits and bytes!

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