The first computer installed in India was at Indian Statistical Institute, Calcutta (now called Kolkata), in 1955. Remember here that the first computers developed and installed are both different. Initially, Indian scientists were struggling to build the Indian original computer. Later in 1991, Indian scientists shocked the world by building a PARAM supercomputer.
In this special article, Let’s begin with the history of computers in India, and then we will see about the first-ever Indian-built, installed, and supercomputer.
History of Indian computer
First Computer in India
The history of computing in India began in 1955. The same year a team headed by R. Narasimhan started designing and fabricating a computer at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) in Bombay.
India’s first computer was TIFRAC (Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Automatic Calculator) was built by the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in Mumbai. The trial machine was developed in the 1950s and became operational in 1956. Jawaharlal Nehru then commissioned it. The whole machine was functional until 1965.
Hence we can say that the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research invented computers in India.
The machine was made of vacuum tubes, and it was housed in a massive steel rack measuring 18 feet x 2.5 feet x 8 feet. It was fabricated from modules of 4 feet x 2.5 feet x 8 feet. Each module had steel doors on either side for accessing the circuits. Cathode ray tube-based display was used to show both analog and digital output.
First Computer installed in India
A British-built HEC 2M computer was the first digital computer in India, imported and installed in Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata, in 1955. Before that, this institute had developed a small Analog Computer in 1953, which is technically the first computer in India.
In 1955 only a few dozen scientists and engineers in India knew about computers. Numbers were increasing with technological advancement, and more people were getting easy access to technology education. The industry employed over 2.4 million people in computer-related jobs in 2010, and over 60 million Personal Computers were in use.
First Super Computer built in India
Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) in Pune, India, built India’s first-ever supercomputer named PARAM. PARAM means “supreme” in Sanskrit; the name also creates an acronym for “PARAllel Machine.”
CDAC went on to build more powerful parallel computers and in 2007 made a machine called PARAM PADMA, which was ranked 171 in the list of 500 fastest computers in the world. The current system from the series PARAM Siddhi AI ranks 89th globally with a Rpeak of 5.267 petaflops in June 2021.
History timeline of computers in India
Here is a timeline of some significant events and developments in the history of computers in India:
- 1950s: The Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Automatic Calculator (TIFRAC) is developed at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in Mumbai. This is the first computer designed and fabricated in India.
- 1960s: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Computer and the SARC Computer are developed in India. These computers are used for scientific research and data processing.
- 1970s: The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Computer is developed in India. This computer is used for research and education.
- 1980s: The first personal computers (PCs) are introduced in India. These early PCs are imported from other countries and are expensive and hard to obtain.
- 1990s: The Indian government launches the National Information Infrastructure (NII) project, which aims to bring computers and the internet to rural areas of the country.
- 2000s: The Indian technology industry starts to grow rapidly, with many domestic and international companies establishing operations in the country. The growth of the technology industry leads to increased access to computers and the internet for people in India.
- 2010s: The number of internet users in India grows rapidly, and the country becomes a major player in the global technology market. The Indian government launches initiatives to promote the use of technology in education, healthcare, and other sectors.
- 2020s: The COVID-19 pandemic accelerates the adoption of technology and digital solutions in India, with many people using computers and the internet to work, study, and communicate remotely. The Indian technology industry continues to grow and innovate, with many companies developing new products and services in areas such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, and cloud computing.
What is the name of first Indian computer?
TIFRAC (Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Automatic Calculator) is the name of first indian computer which was developed by Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Automatic at Mumbai in 1956.
Who is Father of computer in India?
Rangaswamy Narasimhan (April 17, 1926 – September 3, 2007) is referred as father of computers science research in Indian. He was an Indian computer and cognitive scientist.
Which is the world’s first super computer?
The CDC 6600 manufactured by control data corporation is considered as worlds first super computer. It was released in 1964.
Who made first computer?
Charles Babbage an english mathematician and inventor is credited with having conceived the first automatic digital computer. During the mid-1830s Babbage developed plans for the Analytical Engine.
The story of Indian scientists struggling to develop indigenous computer technology is inspiring. Indeed their efforts didn’t go in the vein. Today computer technology is in the reach of every ordinary person. The legacy of struggling dreams should keep carry on toward the service of humanity.