Lead: Though he organized the design and application of one of the world’s first modern computers, the Mark I, Howard Aiken is often left out of the story.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: When Howard Aiken arrived in Cambridge in 1933, he was much older than the average Harvard graduate student. Born in 1900 his early life was not easy. Just as he was to start high school his father left home never to be seen again and Howard had to work nights in order to support his mother and grandparents and still go to high school and then college. During the next decade he rose to ever higher, but increasingly less satisfying management positions in the electric-power industry. He spent a discouraging year at the University of Chicago, but had more success at Harvard getting his Ph.D. in physics in 1939, joining the faculty, eventually rising to full professor.

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