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100 anniversary

Bulgaria Honoured Computer Inventor with Yet Another Monument : 4 October 2003, Saturday.
A new monument dedicated to Bulgaria-descended computer inventor John Atanasoff was inaugurated in Bulgaria on October 4. The ceremony, attended by Atanasoff's son and other family members, took place in his father's birth place - the village of Boyadzhik near Yambol.

Another monument was installed earlier in the center of capital Sofia as part of the celebrations of Atanasoff's 100th birth Anniversary.

At the ceremony in Boyadzhik Bulgaria's Foreign Minister spokesman Lyubomir Todorov delivered a special message from Foreign Minister Solomon Passy. In the speech Atanasoff was called the "electronic Prometheus," since he gave birth to the field of digital computing - an invention that in just a few years affected the lives of almost all people around the globe.

Minister Passy also underlined that people should not forget that we owe this great discovery to a man who had both Bulgarian and American origins.

Bulgarian Ministry Seeks Cooperation with Microsoft : 4 October 2003, Saturday.
Bulgaria's Transport Minister Nikolay Vassilev discussed possible cooperation between the Ministry and US leading software producer Microsoft, at a meeting with its Vice President Pete Hayes on Saturday.

Hayes, who is currently in Sofia to attend celebrations of the 100th birth anniversary of computer inventor John Atanasoff, and Vassilev discussed the possibility for Bulgarian students to undergo training at Microsoft. The company was also invited to assist for building high-tech studying centers at Bulgarian universities.

A joint conference for high technologies development may come into effect at the end of this year or the beginning of 2004, officials from the Ministry said. The Bulgarian minister also handed Hayes a letter of invitation to Microsoft President Bill Gates to visit Bulgaria.

Gates personally sent Hayes on this trip to pay tribute to Bulgaria-descended John Atanasoff, who gave birth to the field of digital computing. Late Atanasoff's son and other family members also arrived in the country for the celebrations.

100 Anniversary of Bulgaria-Descended Computer Inventor Marked in Sofia

Celebrations of this year's 100th anniversary of Bulgaria-descended John Atanasoff, who gave birth to the field of digital computing, included inauguration of a monument of the modern computer inventor. Photo by Gergana Kostadinova ( : 3 October 2003, Friday.
Celebrations of this year's 100th anniversary of Bulgaria-descended John Atanasoff, who gave birth to the field of digital computing, gathered speed in Bulgaria as the day of Atanasoff's birth, October 4, approaches.

In the evening of October 3 Bulgaria's President Georgi Parvanov led a special ceremony to inaugurate a monument of the modern computer inventor.

Atanasoff's son, who bears his name, together with US Ambassador in Bulgaria James Pardew, also joined the event. According to Ambassador Pardew the life of John Atanasoff is a Bulgarian-American success story.

Before the ceremony, Bulgaria's president received John Atanassoff Junior and Microsoft's Vice President Pete Hayes. Parvanov told the guests he decided to found an award named after the great inventor, to be given out for contribution to informational society.

John Atanasoff, who is son of a Bulgarian immigrant from Bulgaria's village of Boyadjik in the Yambol Region, built the world's first electronic digital computer at US Iowa State University during 1937-42 together with his assistant Clifford Berry. Their creation incorporated several major innovations in computing including the use of binary arithmetic, regenerative memory, parallel processing and separation of memory and computing functions.

In 1990, US President George Bush awarded Atanasoff with the National Medal of Science and Technology. However, throughout all his life, the man emphasized proudly his Bulgarian roots.

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