Although he was a 19th-century mathematician, Charles Babbage is credited with inventing the modern computer. He also designed a type of speedometer and the cowcatcher.
Charles Babbage was born on Dec. 26, 1792, in Teignmouth, Devon, England. At age 19 he helped found the Analytical Society, whose purpose was to introduce developments from Europe into English mathematics. At about the same time Babbage first got his idea for mechanically calculating mathematical tables. Later he made a small calculator that could perform certain mathematical computations to eight decimal places.