What previous invention led to the creation of the computer?

Well, this might suprise you. The first computer was actually originally envisioned in 1834 by Charles Babbage. It was not a computer as we think of one today. It was made up of mechanical (not electrical) parts. He never actually could build it because at the time parts could not be made to the precision needed for it to work correctly. See this page for interesting info: http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/on-line/babbage/index.asp The first electronic computer was made during WWII by the U.S. to help create mathematical tables that helped the military aim its weapons, such as, bombs, precisely. Prior to this, these tables were created by humans painstakingly calculating the values mostly by hand. This computer was named ENIAC (electronic numerical integrator and computer). To create this machine certain technologies needed to be used that already existed at the time. It took a number of years to build ENIAC and was finally finished in the fall of 1945. Read this: http://www.seas.upenn.edu/~museum/3tech.html I hope this sheds some light on the evolution of the computer. RS 13/20/51 John Vincent Atanasoff (1903-1995) Papers, 1925-2003 Special Collections Department 403 Parks Library Iowa State University Ames, IA 50011-2140 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------The other answer that is better prooved and supported is: creator: John Vincent Atanasoff (1903-1995) repository: University Archives, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University. preferred citation: John Vincent Atanasoff Papers, RS 13/20/51, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library. Biographical note John Vincent Atanasoff was born in 1903 in New York State. His father was a Bulgarian immigrant named Ivan (John) Atanasov and his mother was Iva Lucena Purdy, a mathematics schoolteacher. The couple had nine children and resided in Brewster, Florida, during John Vincent