(388a) Computing in Chemical Engineering Education: From Mainframes to Main Street

Personal recollections and reflections about computers, computing, and applications to education are presented based on 50+ years of direct participation and observation. Modern computing technology has successfully changed engineering so it now derives from the predictive ability of our science-based models and much less from intuition, ad hoc methods, and correlations. Employing these models requires truly substantial computing capability. No one could have guessed how rapidly mainframe performance would become ubiquitous?first with desktops, then in laptops, and now in ?walking around? cell phones. Trying to predict where computing technology will go, and how fast, is full of uncertainty. So did applications developers waste much time/energy pushing an envelope that from the user's perspective is ?self-receding,? hence uncontrollable and partially unobservable? And even if true, wasn't it still a lot of fun?



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