Japanese Computer Pioneers

Takasaki IsaoTakasaki Isao

Takasaki Isao was born on October 18, 1914, and graduated from Electrical Engineering Department, School of Engineering of Kyoto Imperial University in 1939. Immediately after the graduation, he joined Nippon Electric Corporation (NEC). In the same year, however, he volunteered to serve as a Naval technical officer, and was appointed a lieutenant. Takasaki returned to NEC from the War in 1941.

When Japan Electronic Industry Development Association (JEIDA) was established in 1958, Takasaki was loaned from NEC to JEIDA, and appointed its first Director of Computer Department. At about this time, several Japanese Computer Companies were going to complete their first computers. Takasaki accepted these computers as they come out one after another, and installed them in the computation center prepared in JEIDA for this purpose. The first such computer was NEC's NEAC 2201 completed in November 1958. Hitachi's HITAC 301 followed this, and then Fujitsu's FACOM 212 and Toshiba's TOSBAC 2100. Takasaki not only managed the use of these computers, but also endeavored to promote computer applications. For example, in February through March 1959 he opened a study course entitled, "Electronic Computers and their Applications," to train planners and programmers for data processing and scientific computation. It should be noted that Moriguti Shigeiti developed a common assembly language referred to SIP 100 that could be commonly used on above-mentioned several different machines. Takasaki used this language to promote the education of early programmers in Japan.

When the Information Processing Society of Japan was established in April 1960, Takasaki was one of its promoters. After its establishment, he and Wada Hiroshi endeavored to run it as Managing Directors in its early difficult days. For several years after its establishment, the Society's office space was offered by JEIDA without rent.

In April 1961, Takasaki returned to NEC. When Wada Hiroshi established Japan Algorithm Company in August 1972, he requested Takasaki to run this company as President. Takasaki accepted this offer, and established its foundation as a reliable Systems House. Takasaki died on June 18, 1979 as this Company's first President.

(Takahashi Shigeru)