In 1969 Professor Mike Paterson was young English Computer Scientist visiting Bolt Beranek and Newman. Seymour Papert gave him the task of writing a specification for the first educational robot, which was initially referred to as the LOGO ambulatory executor and more prosaically as the Bug. Later named the Turtle in reference to Grey Walter’s early work with Tortoise Robots. This is the first of two documents by Mike relating to the development of Turtle Educational Robots. This document was provided by Wally Feurzeig of BBN Technologies who led the project that invented Logo. (more…)
In the mid to late 1960s computers were starting to become available. These were in the form of a Programmed Data Processor or PDP made by the Digital Equipment Corporation or DEC. Computer languages were being developed. It was in these circumstance that Seymour Papert invented Logo – a computer language designed for children. The idea for this child friendly language arose during a blue sky development project undertaken by Bolt, Beranek and Newman (BBN) Technologies for the USA Navy. The project was aimed at finding ways computers could be used to train navy personnel. Wally Feurzeig who led the project did deal with the Navy’s programme manager Glen Bryan. When approached about the idea of spending Navy cash in this way Bryan suggested that it would be ok to work with what he called “Military Brats”. So in 1967 a project was started at the Hanscom School on the Hanscom Air Force Base in Lincoln, MA. The final report for this project was sent to the Navy in March 1969 and was written by Feurzeig and Papert. The relevant part of the report is attached to this post as a pdf.