The past 50 years have witnessed a revolution in computing and related communications technologies. The contributions of industry and university researchers to this revolution are manifest; less widely recognized is the major role the federal government played in launching the computing revolution and sustaining its momentum. Funding a Revolution examines the history of computing since World War II to elucidate the federal government's role in funding computing research, supporting the education of computer scientists and engineers, and equipping university research labs. It reviews the economic rationale for government support of research, characterizes federal support for computing research, and summarizes key historical advances in which government-sponsored research played an important role.
Funding a Revolution contains a series of case studies in relational databases, the Internet, theoretical computer science, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality that demonstrate the complex interactions among government, universities, and industry that have driven the field. It offers a series of lessons that identify factors contributing to the success of the nation's computing enterprise and the government's role within it.