Naval Warfare Books

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Between Human and Machine

Feedback, Control and Computing before Cybernetics

By David A. Mindell
2002, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2715 North Charles Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21218-4363.
ISBN 0801868955
Hardcover, 450 pages

Descripton: Although not dealing directly nor exclusively with naval warfare, the book is interesting insofar as it describes in detail the history and development of feedback and control systems in the US before and during WWII. In particular it details the Naval Control Systems from 1916 onwards: rangekeepers, gyrocompass, servo control systems and the shipwide fire control system that thus became possible. We get a description of the 'Ford Rangekeeper', a specialized version of which was used as Torpedo Data Computer on US submarines. Systems covered include: land and sea-based antiaircraft fire control, signal transmission in phone networks, representation of power systems, development and integration of radar into fire control.

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