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Krawtchouk's Mind

Hemos posted more than 10 years ago | from the piecing-together-the-beginning-of-computers dept.

Censorship 260

A reader writes: "Central Europe Review is running an article on a gulag-condemned Soviet scientist whose contribution to the first computer is virtually unknown because of the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain. The story tells of how in 1937, American digital computer pioneer John Atanasoff came across a Myhailo Krawtchouk paper on a new method for finding approximate solutions to differential equations. Atanasoff tried sending a letter to him, but received no response. Krawtchouk had been attainted for giving a favorable review of the work of "enemies of the people" and shipped to Siberia for 20 years of gold mining, where he died four years later. Krawtchouk's biography gives a more detailed account of how Krawtchouk was labeled a "Polish spy" and "Ukrainian nationalist," stripped of his Academy of Sciences membership, and forced to sign a confession -- that he later retracted -- under torture and threats upon his family. "

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260 comments

wait! (-1, Flamebait)

borgdows (599861) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824212)

are you saying that we are using SOVIET COMPUTERS ??

Re:wait! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824235)

Ok, fine...

In Soviet Russia, computers use YOU!

Re:wait! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824307)

fact: we are all communists!!!

Re:wait! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824471)

parent post, flamebait??

MODS should have been communists!

Let's get this out of the way... IN SOVIET RUSSIA (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824215)

Computers invent YOU!

First Computer? (2, Interesting)

archetypeone (599370) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824218)

What about Colossus [bletchleypark.org.uk] ?

Re:First Computer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824236)

1937 pre-dates Colossus by a few years. Obviously, there was work on the maths and the machines before 1937.

Re:First Computer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824264)

Don't be silly, Americans invented everything first, the lightbulb, the telly, the computer, the radio, the fridge, the internal combustion engine, air travel etc. etc. etc.

Don't you know anything?

Colossus is clearly just an elaborate hoax on the part of the limeys...

Re:First Computer? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824436)

While I'm British, someone is going to post a link to a Konrad Zuse biography [vt.edu] , so I may as well do it. Personally, I consider Zuse to be the first with his Z3, closely followed by Colossus, then the ABC. After that is open to debate. Oh and no, the UNIVAC was not the first commercial computer, either.

Bummer! (0, Funny)

Aguamala (512737) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824219)


It's a shame that we couldn't do that twenty to thirty years ago or else Bill Gates could of gotten 20 years of coal mining in PA.

Re:Bummer! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824427)

...wait a minute.. Didn't Bill Gates invent the first computer?

pop that coochie (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824221)

america land of the fag
united states of faggotry
not the land my forefather raped
it' the land ur forearm rape'
lube it up beforehand, ya dats good
check it out tho, oil aint a lube
shitnigga.wtf wuz u thinkin

Attained? Detained, perhaps... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824222)

Sheesh! Seems like they will let anyone post...

Interesting story... (2, Insightful)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824231)

It could use a little more meat, however - exactly how was Krawtchouk's work influential? Anybody care to dig a little further (I would, but work has a bad habit of getting in the way sometimes)?

Re:Interesting story... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824262)

i found this great website here. [google.com]

err... (4, Informative)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824234)

..the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain. The story tells of how in 1937...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Cold War and the Iron Curtain didn't begin until after WWII, in the late 1940's.

Re:err... (4, Informative)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824278)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Cold War and the Iron Curtain didn't begin until after WWII

Correct, Churchill gave the Iron Curtain speech after World War II. However, a "cold war" did exist between the Soviet Union and leading western states ever since the October Revolution. Until the Axis invasion of 1941, the Soviet Union was seen as much of a bogeyman as Hitler's Germany. In fact, Britain had toyed with the idea of declaring war on the USSR in the Winter of 1939 - under the pretext of aiding Finland which was being invaded by Stalin at the time, but really as an excuse to occupy ore-rich Sweden.

Chris

Re:err... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824593)

Wrong. The coldwar is specifically about nukes and the arms race with the United States.

Let me guess, you attended public school?

Re:err...(Frink satire) (4, Funny)

gosand (234100) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824681)

In fact, Britain had toyed with the idea of declaring war on the USSR in the Winter of 1939 - under the pretext of aiding Finland which was being invaded by Stalin at the time, but really as an excuse to occupy ore-rich Sweden.

What you say? One country invading another for natural resources under the pretext of liberation and justice?

Why, that is so far-fetched it's incomprehensible-flaven-goyven. With the oil, and the grudges, and cowboy hats, and the terrrism, and the nuculur threat, and the weapons of mass destruuuuuuuction.

Re:err... (2, Informative)

pkunzipper (652520) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824295)

True, but it was in 1937 that this scientist made his "discovery", but the information was not spread until after the Cold War. In the 1930s, Lenin was in power in Russia and he started the gulag camps in Russia, which after only a few years grew to some 4800 camps throughout the USSR, enslaingmillions of "traitors". This scenario was followed by Stalin, who upheld the gulags under his regime, as well as severe control over the flow of information.

We should thankful that this piece of scientific history was uncovered, sugnificant or not, since here in the Western world we take our liberites for granted.

---

Re:err... (4, Informative)

Mister Black (265849) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824392)

In the 1930s, Lenin was in power in Russia and he started the gulag camps in Russia, which after only a few years grew to some 4800 camps throughout the USSR, enslaingmillions of "traitors".

Wow, that's quite an accomplishment for a guy that died in 1924 [marxists.org] . Must have been all the borsch and vodka.

From '22 to '53 it was all Joe

Re:err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824461)

Blimey, I know Stalin performed a character assination against Lenin, but I didn't realise he had managed to make him live an extra decade or so and credit him with the creation of the Gulags! That crazy Joe Stalin, what a character!

Re:err... (2, Informative)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824376)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Cold War and the Iron Curtain didn't begin until after WWII, in the late 1940's.

You are correct, Winston Churchill coined the phrase "Iron Curtain" on March 5, 1946, while accepting an honorary degree in the US.

From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an iron curtain has descended across the Continent. Behind that line lie all the capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe. Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia; all these famous cities and the populations around them lie in what I must call the Soviet sphere, and all are subject, in one form or another, not only to Soviet influence but to a very high and in some cases increasing measure of control from Moscow.

Far be it from a /. editor to have the slightest grasp of history...

Re:err... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824490)

Far be it from a /. editor to have the slightest grasp of history..

Far be it from someone with a 4 digit user ID to understand the damn difference between the submitters comments, and the editors comments, for christs sake!

Re:err... (1)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824527)

Far be it from someone with a 4 digit user ID to understand the damn difference between the submitters comments, and the editors comments, for christs sake!

Ah, but what editors are supposed to do is edit! Either correct the original, or put a note on it. That's what they've done in the past, when they've bothered.

Re:err... (0, Flamebait)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824452)

the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain. The story tells of how in 1937...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Cold War and the Iron Curtain didn't begin until after WWII, in the late 1940's.


And while I'm on the subject, what the hell does the original poster mean "both sides"? As far as I am aware, the US and UK never sent anyone to a forced labour camp for daring to criticize the state. In fact, Communist parties both existed back then and still exist today all throughout the West. Just this lunchtime I walked past someone selling Socialist Worker, as anti-capitalist, anti-democratic magazine as you can imagine, and he was perfectly free to do that. No-one was ever sent to a gulag for opposing the government, hell we didn't even have gulags in the first place! It was the Soviets who were guilty of intolerance, persecution and oppression, not the West.

Time to call a spade a fucking shovel. We were the good guys, they were the bad guys, they lost, end of story.

Re:err... (3, Informative)

Snart Barfunz (526615) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824495)

True. However, 70,000 people were interned in the UK, most of them European Jews. Unless, like my grandfather, they were unfortunate enough to be forcibly repatriated to Germany. Bogus asylum seekers indeed.

The good guys won. (1)

ArsSineArtificio (150115) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824575)

Time to call a spade a fucking shovel. We were the good guys, they were the bad guys, they lost, end of story.

No kidding. Did anyone else catch the irony in the poster's writeup?

"Central Europe Review is running an article on a gulag-condemned Soviet scientist whose contribution to the first computer is virtually unknown because of the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain.

Sheesh. We apparently had a shameful "Cold War mentality", although the other side was condemning scientists to the gulag - and to obscurity!

ABW

Re:err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824580)


It was the Soviets who were guilty of intolerance, persecution and oppression, not the West.


McCarthyism.
Blacklisting.
Internment camps.
Murder of civil rights leaders.

and on and on and on.
Don't know what it's/was like in the UK, but here in the States, there is/was plenty of intolerance, persecution, oppression, and corruption. It's done by the state and citizens; it's much slimier because it isn't official state policy.

good guys and bad guys - please. That's naive.

Re:err... (1)

-brazil- (111867) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824596)

As far as I am aware, the US and UK never sent anyone to a forced labour camp for daring to criticize the state.


No, they were just harassed, thrown out of their jobs and put into prison without fair trial. Look up "McCarthy" in a history book, kiddo.

Re:err... (3, Insightful)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824607)

We were the good guys, they were the bad guys, they lost, end of story.

It must be so nice to live in such a black and white world as yours. Look up the history of the McCarthy years in the United States for a start. It's finally getting some real historical analysis, having been brushed under the carpet for a long time. The Hoover-era FBI could give the Soviet secret police a few lessons in ethics-free techniques as well. Yes, your local Socialist Worker seller is undoutedly deluded by a bankrupt political creed, but there wasn't much honour amongst the Cold War warriors of either side.

Chris

Re:err... (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824647)

As far as I am aware, the US and UK never sent anyone to a forced labour camp for daring to criticize the state.

No... Here in the US, you just got labeled as a communist, and were (defacto) denied most any future employment.

Sure, (as much as I hate to use the term) ``they" may have been worse, but I would act so terribly proud of the American stance on human rights.

Re:err... (1)

zudo (307075) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824646)

OK, so the submission makes it sound like none of us have heard of Krawtchouk because of cold war mentality alone but if you RTA you'll find that it attributes his anonymity to both the Soviet Unions treatment of him and his fellow scientists at the time as well as the the cold war mentality later...

The Ukrainian mathematician was, then, a victim of protracted amnesia on both sides of the Iron Curtain. Was he also a victim of the Cold War mentality? Until the end of the 1980s, Western mathematicians rarely cited his works. They named another polynomial, which Krawtchouk discovered, after a German mathematician.

Actually... (5, Interesting)

LeoDV (653216) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824257)

I think the first computer was invented in 1936 by a German scientist, Konrad Zuse, who later had to flee to Switzerland because of the war... At least that't About.com claims [about.com] .

You know, it's really funny how things can be invented in several places at the same time... Like the modern guitar as we know it was come up with in China, the Middle East and Spain at the exact same times (and not chronologically, implying that the invention would have traveled)... Or how Pythagores, Zarathustra, Buddha and Lao-Tse, who each pioneered philosophy in their own continent, were contemporaries.

First electronic digital.. (1)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824330)

Was the atanasoff-berry, There had been other computers (such as mechanical) before that time.

Re:First electronic digital.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824513)

No, it wasn't [bletchleypark.org.uk] While we're at it, Edison did not invent the lightbulb, a Scotsman invented the Television.

Re:Actually... (1)

mdransfield (101993) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824362)

According to Zuse himself, he stayed in Germany throughout the war building larger and more complex machines through to the Z4 in 1944-5.

See this biography [vt.edu] of him.

Re:Actually... (2, Informative)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824371)

Zuse's machines had no type of a branch instruction, they could only perform a sequence of calculations. Ie; no conditionals (ifs) or loops (for, while, etc).

A lot of comp. sci folks hold that it's not a computer until it can branch and do conditional logic. Zuse's work was impressive, especially considering they were built way cheap (they used like recycled tin from soupcans and whatnot - very MacGyver) but they were really more like an automated adding machine than a computer as we know it.

At least that's what I was taught about it.

Re:Actually... (1)

hughk (248126) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824377)

Probably the invention can be dated back to Babbage's analytical engine (1834). Although it wasn't completed, the designs and principles were good for a general purpose programmable calculating device. It was reckoned that the main problem preventing completion was the inability to mass produce parts of the required tolerance.

Not Turing Machines? (1)

arevos (659374) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824525)

But, IIRC, the Z1, Z2 and Z3 weren't Turing Machines. Was Colossus a Turing Machine, or did physical representations of Turning Machines come later?

Re:Actually... (1)

LeoDV (653216) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824586)

I'm sorry about all the factual mistakes in that post that you guys pointed out, I was just drawing from old memories, but my point was really this: with the way societies evolve, inventions sometimes appear at the same time for reasons we really don't know and would be quite interesting to explore (psychohistory, anyone?).

Apparently some people came up with the idea of something that would lead to the computer at the same time in the US, Russia, Germany, who knows elsewhere, and I think that is really interesting. Hence the example about guitars, which comes from a friend who's a guitar teacher and really researched this issue, and assures me the guitar popped up in all those places at the same time in a way that makes us pretty sure it wasn't just an invention that spread (like the zero). Or how in each major civilisational area (Europe, Mid-East, India and the Far East) of the globe philosophy appeared within a span of 50 years.

Besides the guitar, it's interesting to note that philosophy and computers are arguably the two most important things humanity came up with (definitely a top 5, along with art, religion and the hole in doughnuts), and both share this characteristic.

Geek Persecution (3, Interesting)

ArmenTanzarian (210418) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824258)

This isn't really even a communist thing. Geek persecution on both sides of the wall was rough. I mean, where's Alan Turing?

Re:Geek Persecution (4, Informative)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824313)

This isn't really even a communist thing. Geek persecution on both sides of the wall was rough. I mean, where's Alan Turing?

While the establishment's treatment of Turing was a disgrace, I think it pales into insignificance compared to Stalin's terror. For an excellent introduction to life at the time of the purges, I can highly recommend Solzhenitsyn's "One Day In The Life of Ivan Denisovich", closely followed by his "Gulag Archipelago". It's a while since I read the latter, but I'm pretty sure it's the one that fictionalised Russian scientists working in an "intelligentsia prison".

Chris

Re:Geek Persecution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824545)

Wasn't Alan Turning just mentaly sick. It's quite common among geniuses

Re:Geek Persecution (1)

-brazil- (111867) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824660)

Turing was homosexual. Because of that, he lost his security clearance for government work and was forced to undergo hormone "therapy". Most likely these were the reasons why he committed suicide.

Hrm, (3, Informative)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824285)

Just to let everyone know, Atanasoff was an Iowa State professor.

Go Cyclones! :P

Re:Hrm, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824546)

Too bad ISU's Computer Science program blows.

Name one good paper that has come out of Iowa State in the past 20 years.

-Intro programming courses suck because they are not taught by real professors.
-The labs blow (Windoze on new Dells, Linux on Pentium 2s)
-They have a TA fetish. Instead of hiring enough professors to teach a course they have one section with a professor and 3 TAs. The professor doesn't have enough time for many office hours, so if you get stuck with bad TAs you are screwed.
-They are grant whores, so litte useful research gets done. Most of the research is for NSF-NIH pet "bioinformatics" projects, "Information Security", and "Copyright management".

Re:Hrm, (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824677)

Well done... you read the article

Infected both sides? (3, Insightful)

sphealey (2855) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824294)

running an article on a gulag-condemned Soviet scientist whose contribution to the first computer is virtually unknown because of the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain

Krawtchouk had been attainted for giving a favorable review of the work of "enemies of the people" and shipped to Siberia for 20 years of gold mining, where he died four years later. Krawtchouk's biography gives a more detailed account of how Krawtchouk was labeled a "Polish spy" and "Ukrainian nationalist," stripped of his Academy of Sciences membership, and forced to sign a confession -- that he later retracted -- under torture and threats upon his family.

As a citizen of a Western power, I did not at the time and still today eo not agree with everything that the leaders of the Western nations did during the Cold War. But particularly since the collapse of the Soviet Union I think there is plenty of evidence that the two side in that conflict were not just mirror-image evil twins. Facing a society where internal deportation and execution by overwork/freezing is the punishment for publishing a disfavored theory of mathematics, I think there just might be some justification for the policies of the West.

sPh

Post-stalin USSR was not nearly as bad (0)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824352)

After Stalin died, the USSR mellowed out quite a bit.

And more importantly, while American citizens were treated well, the US government supported dictators who were every bit as bad as Stalin.

It was a lot better to be a citizen of the US then one of the USSR, but that doesn't mean the over-all actions of the US were better.

Infected both sides? [OT] (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824488)

>>the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides
>the two side in that conflict were not just mirror-image evil twins
Actually living in Poland, a state that was just 15 years ago ruled by communists, I find it quite grotesque sitting in front of my computer and reading diffrent americans who probably never saw communisim making snide remarks comparing the USA to the USSR.
Even today people risk their lives trying to escape from Cuba or starve in North Korea, yet I have never heard of someone trying to escape from Chile to Russia (or defecting in east Berlin) and South Korea is one of the richest countrys in the world

Re:Post-stalin USSR was not nearly as bad - Bunk! (1)

reallocate (142797) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824625)

Mellowed out?

Gulags existed until the USSR collapsed in 1991, and some of those camps are still in business as Russian prisons.

And, it is not at all important that the U.S. supported "supported dictators who were every bit as bad as Stalin." (so you say). U.S. support for any government cannot be used to justify the existence and actions of the Soviet Union. Nor can any cause-and-effect linkage be established between U.S. diplomacy and the existence of the Soviet Union. This assertion is nothing more than a perennial lame exercise in non-thought trotted out by people more interested in avoiding reality than confronting truth.

Re:Post-stalin USSR was not nearly as bad - Bunk! (1)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824658)

U.S. support for any government cannot be used to justify the existence and actions of the Soviet Union.

So what?

Btw, if what you say is true, does that mean that Soviet existence cannot be used to Justify US support for corrupt and murderous regimes?

Re:Infected both sides? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824408)

I think there just might be some justification for the policies of the West.

Yeah.. yeah.. and now go back to your living room.. TV is waiting..

building bridges (4, Interesting)

dollargonzo (519030) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824305)

the soviets really have a bad history of blocking science from progressing in fear of spies / enemies of the ppl, etc. one of the greatest examples is a man who wanted to build a bridge. before he could start working out all the details, he order a catalog of all the ships in the world, so he could know exactly which ones might be passing under his bridge. the catalog is manufcatured outside of the iron curtain...when he received it, the pages with the russian vessels were torn out at the border.

this is just beyond stupidity. so, apparently, the entire world can know the dimensions of soviet vessels, but not the soviets??

Re:building bridges (4, Interesting)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824409)

the entire world can know the dimensions of soviet vessels, but not the soviets

It got worse than that - in fact the truth seems more like a Kafka novel at times. I can't remember the book I read about Soviet industrial and scientific cock ups, but some of the more absurd epsisodes have stuck in my mind.

An attempt was made to build a permanent railroad across the Northern expanse of Siberia. Despite the protestations of engineers that building it without firm pilings and at the wrong time of year was foolhardy, the project went ahead. Unsuitable labour was used, in the form of ill-equipped and inexperienced gulag inmates. Track was lain during harsh Winter conditions. And of course, come the thaw, the lines buckled, embankments collapsed and trains toppled over. Their are still rusting remains of trains and track littering the region.

Stalin was quite prepared to listen to crackpots and cranks, often promoting them to high academic positions. Genuine academics were either too frightened to speak out against Stalin's favourites, or sent to gulags for disagreeing with lunatic theories. Similarly, several of the Soviet Unions leading aircraft designers spent the Second World War working in prison having falling out of favour with Stalin.

Chris

Re:building bridges (1)

Zathrus (232140) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824632)

Similarly, several of the Soviet Unions leading aircraft designers spent the Second World War working in prison having falling out of favour with Stalin.

True, but even Stalin wasn't a complete idiot when it came to things like this. Tupolev was sent to the gulag after falling out of favor, but it was not the typical work-till-you-die gulag - it was an intellegensia one. Tupolev may have pissed off Stalin, but Stalin still realized he was of more use alive than dead and "merely" forced him to continue doing his work... just in isolation from the general populace.

Not that it makes Stalin any less of a monster, or what he did to Tupolev much better than those who were sent to the real gulags.

Re:building bridges (1)

jpkunst (612360) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824472)

the soviets really have a bad history of blocking science from progressing in fear of spies / enemies of the ppl

Much worse was the endorsement of bogus science that was supposed to be in accordance with Marxism, and the supression and destruction of real science. For example, Lysenkoism [skepdic.com] instead of real genetics.

JP

Ripped off! (4, Informative)

Dot.Com.CEO (624226) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824318)

From K5. Here [kuro5hin.org] . It has the EXACT wording of the k5 article...

Re:Ripped off! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824573)

that explains where the equivocating leftist crap comments comparing the the West with the USSR came from. I'm surprised it did not blame the whole thing on the US, considering it was posted at K5.

Newsflash! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824583)

It was posted on /. too. Moron.

Re:Ripped off! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824578)

Someone might read it now...

attained? (1)

jovlinger (55075) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824319)

surely you mean "detained"

even worse: "attainted" (1)

bpfinn (557273) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824648)

I thought, is "attainted" even a word? Then I found this on Merriam-Webster's web site:

Main Entry: attaint
Function: transitive verb
Etymology: Middle English attaynten, from Middle French ataint, past participle of ataindre
Date: 14th century
1 : to affect by attainder
2 a : INFECT, CORRUPT b archaic : TAINT, SULLY
3 archaic : ACCUSE

I don't think that's what the submitter meant, but it is a word. Whadya know?

In Soviet Russia.. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824322)

.. he was sent to Siberia..
.. in the US it is enough with a Cease and Desist letter to stem reaserch..
.. the capitalists found a cheaper way than the communists..

Similar things continue... (4, Insightful)

mi (197448) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824323)

Although similar persecutions continue in some countries to these days, the public opinion in many democracies would not tolerate any outside action against the oppressing governments.

Living your life under Stalin, Kim of North Korea, Castro, Saddam Hussein is worse than war... Trade sanctions -- a modern democracies' usual "civilized" weapon against each other -- don't work against these scumbags. They pass the suffering onto their people...

Re:Similar things continue... (1)

XSforMe (446716) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824538)

Living your life under Stalin, Kim of North Korea, Castro, Saddam Hussein is worse than war
Not that I support any of this people; but how would you know about this? Have you ever lived under any of this regimes? Have you ever had to face the crudeness of a war?

Do Myhailo a favor... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824335)

Next time you see one of those spoiled, white brats protesting America wearing a red communist T-Shirt, give 'em a bitch slap for old Myhailo Krawtchouk.

How anyone can idolize communism beyond me. How much innovation have we lost to this horrible political system?

Re:Do Myhailo a favor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824428)

How much innovation have we lost to this horrible political system?

Nearly as much as is lost in the sanctioned monopolies of the fabulously efficient capitalism, that you no doubt, love I would wager.

Re:Do Myhailo a favor... (2, Insightful)

sprprsnmn (619113) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824467)

I'll bite.

It's mainly that true Marxist communism is an economic theory, and not a political system. Marxist-Leninism, OTOH, has been viewed as what "True Communism" is to the sheepish West. It's so easy to demonize a demonic institution like totalitarianism, and label that as the "Axis of Evil" (1.0)

jjayson on kuro5hin.org got ripped off (4, Informative)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824339)

unless he is the "a reader" that submitted the story

http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2003/4/27/5153/73626 [kuro5hin.org]

note the word-for-word plagiarization/ lifting

just trying to keep it honest

Re:jjayson on kuro5hin.org got ripped off (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824666)

I'd like to hear what Hemos has to say, the editorial integrity issues need to be addressed.

History books? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824343)

Relations with Russia were strained since the Bolshevik revolution, sure, but the Cold War didn't start until AFTER WWII, when Stalin made it clear he had no intention of leaving the countries Russia had occupied.

BTW, 1937 is before WWII.

IN SOVIET RUSSIA,
History doesnt understand Hemos

Uh-Oh.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824366)

..in the US a war for freedom always starts with news like this :)

Slava Ukraine! (1)

moloko_man (669100) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824378)

Just goes to show that great minds did exist in Ukraine and Russia, and still do, they just need to be discovered. I guess living in Ukraine for a couple years I favor Ukraine.

IN SOVIET RUSSIA... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824401)

...differential equations find approximate solutions of you.

Re:IN SOVIET RUSSIA... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824449)

Approximate FINAL solutions.

Not another one... (1)

Bendebecker (633126) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824403)

No offense to Krawtchouk but I am sort of getting tired of everyone and their uncle claiming credit for the invention or at least some of the fundemental work that contributed to the first computers. It seems to me just about everyone is now claiming credit for having invented the first modern computers. I think the invention of the first computers was like the invention of the video game. It doesn't matter who created the first ones and what fundemental work they did, the ones who get credit are the ones whose ideas went somewhere.

russia blah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824410)

This is typical of Russian thinking. In fact, I havent met a Russian Immigrant in the US who wasn't a criminal.

Re:russia blah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824420)

Its why I wont buy anything from a computer retailer whose phone voice sounds eastern european or russian. damn crooks.

Krawtchouk? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824422)

Isn't he a defenseman for the Panthers?

Im Afraid (1)

Cheapoboy (634792) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824448)

held without trail? forced to confess? sounds like he was a victim of the soviet ïàòðèîò act.

Other Simultaneous Work. (3, Interesting)

Flamesplash (469287) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824458)

This issue has come up in the Computational Complexity course I am taking.

In particular the Cook-Levin Theorem wah proved simultaneously by Steve Cook in the US and Lenoid Levin in the USSR.

Additionally the Immerman-Szelepcsenyi Theorem was proven by Neil Immerman (US) and Richard Szelepcsenyi (Slovakia).

Neither were known for some time due to the lack of communication on both sides.

An earlier Difference Engine.... (5, Informative)

hughk (248126) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824536)

was the one devised by Charles Babbage around 1832. It was started but never completed. However, part of the calculating section was produced in 1832. Babbage revised his design to simplify it but the second version was not produced. The Difference Engine No. 2 was produced from Babbage's plans by the Science Museum in Britain [sciencemuseum.org.uk] to verify that it would work. The team building it restricted themselves to manufacturing accuracies attainable 150 years ago. It worked after the correction of some small errors, which were felt to be deliberate (the Victorians feared espionage and frequently introduced a few deliberate mistakes into technical drawings.

The printer [bbc.co.uk] was completed in 2000. It featured variable spacing and line wrapping. Not bad for something that is 100% mechanical.

It should be noted that as with the machine talked about here, this was a machine for solving simple differential equations (tides) as well as more standard types of maths (i.e., logs, sines and so on) for the production of tables. It was not a general purpose computer, that term was reserved for his Analytical Engine - which was designed but never produced. However Ada Byron, Countess of Lovelace wrote some programs for it, converting equations into algorithms and generating register settings which could be punched on the Jacquard cards (Babbage pinched this idea from the manufacturers of automatic-looms, a long time before Hollerith).

If Babbage had completed the Analytical engine, we could have been in a very different world. One version would have been hypothesized in William Gibson's "The Difference Engine".

Re:An earlier Difference Engine.... (1)

lysander (31017) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824650)

If Babbage had completed the Analytical engine, we could have been in a very different world. One version would have been hypothesized in William Gibson's "The Difference Engine".

That was one Gibson book in which the world is infinitely more interesting than the story.

Although some would argue that has always been the case for Gibson.

USSR Responsible for Cold War, Krawtchouk Abuse (2, Interesting)

reallocate (142797) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824561)

Krawtchouk's woes can't be attributed to "the Cold War mentality that infected much of society on both sides of the Iron Curtain...".

His obscurity, yes. But not his abuse by the Soviet Union. Hemos' casual paraphrasing of one line in the Reviews' piece serves to apportion responsibility for the Cold War equally among the Soviets and the U.S. This is wrong. Soviet totalitarianism was responsible for both Krawtchouk's abuse and his obscurity, while Soviet military occupation of one-half of Europe, the imposition of Soviet totalitarianism there and an expressed intent to eliminate democratic governments elsewhere were the causes of the Cold War.

Some revisionist historians -- who always seem to me to be embarrassed by democracy -- will disagree, but can they truthfully imagine the Cold War happening if the Soviet Union had been a free and democratic nation with no expansionist aims?

Re:USSR Responsible for Cold War, Krawtchouk Abuse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#5824662)

To paraphrase you:

Some revisionist historians will disagree, but can they truthfully imagine the invasion of Iraq happening if the United States had been a free and democratic nation with no expansionist aims?

Look up the philosophy of the USA's "backyard", where US politicians decided Central and South America were solely their spehere of influence. Now extrapolate that forward to the current round of US posturing in the oil rich Middle East. How long before it's Syria's turn?

This sounds like a story out of Scientology (2, Informative)

leereyno (32197) | more than 10 years ago | (#5824571)

To anyone familiar with Scientology, and especially its RPF, this story sounds eerily familiar.

The secret Library of scientology:
http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Library /

Operation Clambake:
http://www.xenu.net

(I'm still waiting for my goldenrod)
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