Computers: Who Takes Care of the Caretaker?

Computers seem efficient, but are they really? To show just how well the electronic brains really work, U.C.L.A. Engineering Professor Gerald Estrin and a colleague, Dr. Bertram Bussell, have set up Project SEE (for Systems Efficiency Expert) and contracted with the Defense Department to monitor a 19-unit, nationwide computer network. Spying for SEE will be a $500,000 Sigma 7 computer, which will examine such computer problems as: how well computers translate instructions into their own language, how organized they are in storing similar bits of information close to one another, how often they unnecessarily repeat themselves in solving problems,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!