Dateline: November 4, 1952: UNIVAC Predicts an Eisenhower Win! Sixty years ago this November, public opinion polls gave the 1952 Presidential election to Adlai Stevenson. UNIVAC, star of CBS’ election coverage (along with a new anchor, Walter Cronkite), predicted an Eisenhower landslide. UNIVAC was right. The computer’s TV debut captivated an audience already enthralled by technology and confronting new tools—and new terminology—almost daily. "UNIVAC" became synonymous with "computer" for a generation of Americans.
Although much has changed since 1952, technology and politics remain closely intertwined. We’ll look at the history of using computing to poll and predict election outcomes, as well as how campaigns have used technology, as the Obama team did in 2008, to win elections. What are the implications of technology-driven campaigns and the electorate’s use of social media on our republic? What are the positives and negatives associated with all of this connectivity?
Event is free, but please register at computerhistory.org/events