Computers Ltd: What They REALLY Can't Do

OUP Oxford (2003)
Abstract
Computers are incredible. They are one of the most important inventions of the 20th century, dramatically and irrevocably changing the way we live. That is the good news. The bad news is that there are still major limitations to computers, serious problems that not even the most powerful computers can solve. The consequences of such limitations can be serious. Too often these limits get overlooked, in the quest for bigger, better, and more powerful computers. In Computers Ltd., David Harel, best-selling author of Algorithmics, explains and illustrates one of the most fundamental, yet under-exposed facets of computers - their inherent limitations. Looking at the bad news that is proven, lasting and robust, discussing limitations that no amounts of hardware, software, talents or resources can overcome, the book presents a disturbing and provocative view of computing at the start of the 21st century. Along the way he shows just how far from perfect computers are, while shattering some of the many claims made for these machines. Though we may strive for bigger and better things in computing, we need to be realistic: computers are not omnipotent - far from it. Moreover, the problem is real and here to stay.
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ISBN(s) 9780198604426   0198604424
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