Re: Difference Engine (Was: Hypatia inventions)

Lee Daniel Crocker (
Wed, 12 Mar 1997 22:39:52 -0800 (PST)

> BTW, the SciAm article tells an interesting story. I always assumed that
> Babbage never completed his inventions because he'd become obseesed with
> ideas for improvements that would of course delay project completion. In
> fact he was held up by some of my EE professors in college as a classic
> case of "creeping elegance" - "Don't let this happen to you!" Now I realize
> that he couldn't get funding because he couldn't convince the British
> government of the utility of such a machine - a different lesson altogether
> and one entrepreneurs the world over can relate to, I think.

Perhaps is he hadn't wasted so much of his time trying to convince the King
to steal his stake for him, but had appealed to real entrepreneurs across
the Atlantic, things might have been different. But then I wouldn't have
expected a socialist propaganda rag like SciAm to see that angle.

Lee Daniel Crocker <>