Take a guess: how long have we been dealing with software bugs?
It’s not 30 years, around the time Windows was first released.
It’s not 48 years, the start of the Unix epoch.
It’s actually much longer. 71 years and 2 days, to be exact. Here’s why.
Back on September 9, 1947, Grace Hopper, a Harvard computer scientist, was running tests on a calculator and found calculation errors. She did some investigation and found a moth that had landed between two solenoid contacts, shorting out an electromechanical relay. Apparently, the bug had been attracted by the warmth of the machine.
We now commemorate this occasion every September 9, Tester’s Day.
As you can see in her logbook entry below, dated September 9, the actual offending month was taped to the page. So not only is the first known example of a software bug, it’s probably the most tangible example of one as well.