“Claude Shannon, a mathematician and computer scientist whose theories became the basis for modern mass communications networks, died Saturday after battling Alzheimer’s disease. He was 84. He invented binary code.”

“He’s one of the great men of the century. Without him, none of the things we know today would exist. The whole digital revolution started with him,” Neil Sloane, an AT&T fellow who co-edited Shannon’s collected works, said in Tuesday’s edition of The Star-Ledger of Newark.”

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http://www.nyu.edu/pages/linguistics/courses/v610003/shan.html

“Claude Elwood Shannon is considered as the founding father of electronic communications age. He is an American mathematical engineer, whose work on technical and engineering problems within the communications industry, laying the groundwork for both the computer industry and telecommunications. After Shannon noticed the similarity between Boolean algebra and the telephone switching circuits, he applied Boolean algebra to electrical systems at the Massachusetts Institute of technology (MIT) in 1940. Later he joined the staff of Bell Telephone Laboratories in 1942. While working at Bell Laboratories, he formulated a theory explaining the communication of information and worked on the problem of most efficiently transmitting information. The mathematical theory of communication was the climax of Shannon’s mathematical and engineering investigations. The concept of entropy was an important feature of Shannon’s theory, which he demonstrated to be equivalent to a shortage in the information content (a degree of uncertainty) in a message.”

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