# Computers, Numerical Methods

Cambidge: printed by J. Smith . . . and sold by Deighton & Sons [etc.], 1813. First edition, extremely rare, of the only volume of the Memoirs of the Analytical Society, written entirely by Babbage and Herschel while students at Cambridge University. The aim of the society was to promote... More

Item #3307

London: John Murray, 1851. First edition, rare, especially in the original publisher’s cloth. Chapter 13, entitled ‘Calculating engines,’ contains a description of the current state of development of Babbage’s Analytical Engine. Conceived by him in 1834, this machine was designed to evaluate any mathematical formula and to have even higher... More

Item #3299

London: Charles Knight, 1832. First edition, very rare large paper issue, of Babbage’s pioneering work of political economy, “a remarkable performance of a remarkable man” (Schumpeter, p. 541), and “a turning point in economic writing” (ODNB). “The first edition of On the economy of machinery and manufacturers was issued in... More

Item #3304

London: G. Barclay, 1845-1860. A possibly unique collection of pamphlets, all first editions, documenting the decades-long dispute between Babbage (1791-1871) and his archenemy Sheepshanks (1794-1855), but also involving Sir James South (1785-1867) and Sir George Biddell Airy (1801-1892). “In a section [of Exposition of 1851] called “Intrigues of Science” Babbage... More

Item #4050

BARDEEN, J.; BRATTAIN, W. H.; SHOCKLEY, W.; PEARSON, W. L.; William, SPARKS, M.; TEAL, G.

Lancaster, PA., and New York: American Physical Society, 1948; 1949; 1951. First edition, journal issues, documenting the invention of the transistor, “which has been called ‘the most important invention of the 20th Century.’ Developed from semiconductor material, the transistor was the first device that could both amplify an electrical signal... More

Item #4566

First edition. New York: American Telephoen and Telegraph Company, 1949. The first comprehensive report on the transistor; one of the most important inventions of the 20th Century. The invention of the transistor was first announced in three short letters by Bardeen, Brattain, Shockley, and Pearson, in The Physical Review (July... More

Item #2419

N.P. Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corp. 1949. Rare sales brochure for Eckert and Mauchly’s BINAC, the first operational stored-program computer in the United States. ❧Origins of Cyberspace 1145. J. Presper Eckert, together with his partner John Mauchly, invented and constructed the first general-purpose digital computer (the ENIAC) during World War II. After... More

Item #3320

Paris: Firmin Didot Fréres, 1836 [-1841]. First edition, rare in the original printed wrappers, of Champollion’s monumental work on Egyptian grammar, which laid the foundations for all subsequent discoveries in Egyptology. It contains the first printed list of hierolglyphs (260 in all). “The Grammar set out Champollion’s theory and classification... More

Item #3708

New York: The Association for Symbolic Logic, Inc., 1936. First edition, journal issue, of Church’s solution to the ‘Entschedungsproblem’ (‘decision problem’). “Church’s paper, submitted on April 15, 1936, was the first to contain a demonstration that David Hilbert’s ‘Entscheidungsproblem’ – i.e., the question as to whether there exists in mathematics... More

Item #4546

Baltimore, Maryland: John Hopkins, 1936. First edition of the first proof that the Entscheidungsproblem (‘decision problem’) is unsolvable, published seven months before Alan Turing published his own independent proof in his paper ‘On computable numbers, with an application to the Entscheidungsproblem.’ Church’s proof was via his ‘lambda-calculus’; Turing’s was via... More

Item #4543

[N.p. N.p.], 1879-81. Provenance: The January 1879 printing is Dodgson’s own copy with his autograph emendations. The other two printings are the copies of Dodgson’s child friend Agnes Caroline Smith: the February 1879 printing is signed by her (evidently the hand of a child), and the 1881 printing is inscribed... More

Item #3951

Jena: Hermann Pohle, 1891. First edition, very rare, of this important essay, in which Frege carried out a revision of his famous Begriffsschrift (1879), which was necessary in order to carry out his programme of reducing arithmetic to formal logic. Function und Begriff contains Frege’s two main innovations since the... More

Item #3523

Leipzig: Akademische Verlagsgesellschaft, 1931; 1930. First edition, extremely rare author’s presentation offprint, of Gödel’s famous incompleteness theorem, “one of the major contributions to modern scientific thought” (Nagel & Newman). “Every system of arithmetic contains arithmetical propositions, by which is meant propositions concerned solely with relations between whole numbers, which can... More

Item #4559

Leipzig & Berlin: B.G. Teubner, 1931-33. First editions, and a fine set in the original printed wrappers, of these rare proceedings to which Gödel contributed thirteen important papers and remarks on the foundations of logic and mathematics (see below for a complete annotated listing). The most important are perhaps ‘Über... More

Item #3707

HOOD, Thomas; MOHR, Georg; BEDWELL, William; STURM, Johannes.

London; Amsterdam: J. Windet and sold by S. Shorter; Jacob van Velsen for the author, [1598]; 1672. One of the most remarkable sammelbands from the Macclesfield library, containing the extremely rare first edition of the first published work on the ‘sector’, also called the ‘geometrical compass’ by Galileo who developed... More

Item #4635

Berlin: Johann Christian Papen, 1710. First edition, rare, of this milestone in computer history, Leibniz’s description of his famous calculating machine, the first stepped-drum calculator, and the first machine that could perform multiplication and division. “Leibniz studied Morland’s and Pascal’s various designs and set himself the task of constructing a.... More

Item #4596

Lyons: Jacob Marechal for Simon Vincent, 5 May 1517. Third edition, the first edited by the Lullist Bernard de Lavinheta (d. ca. 1530), of the Ars Magna, his greatest work, now recognised as perhaps the first work in computer science. “Lull invented an ‘art of finding truth’ which inspired Leibniz's... More

Item #4363

London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1876. First edition, rare on the market in this condition, of Maxwell's textbook on dynamics, “a masterpiece of natural philosophy, notable especially for introducing into physics the term relativity in a passage that combines strenuous scientific insight with a mystical awareness … [It] had... More

Item #3849

Paris: Anselin, 1842. First edition, journal issue, of the only public presentation that Babbage ever made concerning the design and operation of the Analytical Engine. “This was the first published account of Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine and the first account of its logical design, including the first examples of computer... More

Item #4494

Cambridge, MA: September 1967. First edition, extremely rare pre-publication issue, of this important early work in Artificial Intelligence (AI), containing the first systematic study of parallelism in computation. It was first published in book form in 1969 as Perceptrons. An Introduction to Computational Geometry (second edition 1987). It “has remained... More

Item #4332

Edinburgh; Padua: Andrew Hart; Giacomo Cadorino, 1619; [1667]. First edition, extremely rare, of this complement to Napier’s epoch-making Mirifici logorithmorum canonis descriptio (1614) – while the Descriptio gave the first ever table of logarithms, it was in the Constructio that Napier explained the method of their construction. It is here... More

Item #4638

Turin: Bocca Brothers, 1889. First edition, and a fine copy in the original printed wrappers, of Peano’s most important work, which contains the first statement of the famous ‘Peano axioms’ for the natural numbers and which remains of seminal importance to mathematics and mathematical logic. “Peano’s most important contribution to... More

Item #4539

[The Association for Symbolic Logic], 1936. First edition, very rare offprint, of Post’s formulation of the notions of computation and solvability by means of a theoretical machine very similar to the concept of a Turing machine proposed by Alan Turing in his famous paper ‘On computable numbers.’ Alonzo Church had... More

Item #4062

New York: American Telephone and Telegraph Company, 1948. First edition, the rare offprint, of “the most famous work in the history of communication theory” (Origins of Cyberspace). “Probably no single work in this century has more profoundly altered man's understanding of communication than C. E. Shannon’s article, ‘A mathematical theory... More

Item #4656

London: C.F. Hodgson and Son, 1936-37. First edition, in the original printed wrappers. On Computable Numbers’ is regarded as the founding publication of the modern science of computing. It contributed vital ideas to the development, in the 1940s, of the electronic stored-programme digital computer. ‘On Computable Numbers’ is the birthplace... More

Item #4474