A machine is a device with several parts that work together to perform a task. A machine can augment or replace the efforts required by an animal or human to make it easier to complete a task. For example, a car is a complex machine that transports humans and other things.
Early computing started with counting machines, which were machines designed to tabulate logarithms and other functions. For example, Charles Babbage created the difference engine, an advanced counting machine also known as a mechanical calculator. The picture is an example of the analytical engine, one of Babbage's later machines.
What is a simple machine?
A simple machine is a device that improves efficiency with few or no parts. For example, a pulley is an example of a simple machine. Other common simple machines include:
- Axel and wheel
- Inclined plane