Computers Make Very Fast, Very Accurate Mistakes

Roy Zuvers? Stephen Tonnison? Paul Parkhurst? Anonymous?

Dear Quote Investigator: Computers are known for performing blazingly fast calculations with excruciating precision. Computers are also known for inescapable bugs. A humorous statement combines these attributes:

Computers make very fast, very accurate mistakes.

Would you please explore the provenance of this remark?

Quote Investigator: The earliest match located by QI appeared in a message posted on July 12, 1991 by Roy Zuvers to the newsgroup misc.handicap of the Usenet distributed message system. Zuvers was posting from Fidonet, a network of computer bulletin board systems. The quip used the singular “Computer” instead of “Computers”. The statement occurred in a signature line, and no attribution was provided. Boldface added to excerpts by QI:[1] 1991 July 12, Usenet discussion message, Newsgroup: misc.handicap, From: Roy Zuvers, Subject: nfb and nls. (Google Groups Search; Accessed December 31, 2021) link

* DeLuxe 1.1 #6289 Computer Make Very Fast, Very Accurate Mistake

Currently, the originator of the expression remains anonymous. Perhaps future researchers will discover earlier citations.

Below are additional selected citations in chronological order.

Continue reading Computers Make Very Fast, Very Accurate Mistakes

References

References
1 1991 July 12, Usenet discussion message, Newsgroup: misc.handicap, From: Roy Zuvers, Subject: nfb and nls. (Google Groups Search; Accessed December 31, 2021) link