Programming for Whirlwind I
The Whirlwind I computer, WWI, at MIT is a high-speed electronic digital computer. It will be used in a wide variety of applications involving computations for mathematical and engineering problems, accounting, statistical analysis, and simulation and control processes. The preparation of such problems for WWI is essentially a matter of expressing the processes to be performed in terms of a list of the computer's basic operations. Such a list is called a program. WWI also automatically sequences the operations listed in a program so that they are performed one after the other. The terminology and concepts of programming for WWI and of WWI itself, essential to an understanding of programming for the computer, are presented here in the section on Essentials of Programming and in the Appendix. A progressively developed set of examples of programs is included to indicate how programs are developed, to illustrate the nature of various ways of handling different processes, and to suggest the flexibility of programming techniques. Use is made of flow diagrams and of subroutine techniques, both in the analysis and in the preparation of programs. Once the programmer understands the basic WWI operations and how programs are developed from them, the programming of a problem reduces to an analysis of the original problem. This analysis is the same, of course, as if the actual computations were to be made by less automatic operations.