This is a short book that goes a long way toward making the science of cybernetics understandable. At a time when the practical applications of ""intelligent"" machines have already made an impact great enough to herald a second Industrial Revolution, the men behind the theories and inventions are relatively unknown. The author goes back into science history to reveal the stories of the 19th century mathematicians and scientists who began working on the first computers. By transferring knowledge of the way in which the brain and nervous systems of man work, the scientists have produced machines that respond to sound and light control. The discussion of computer math is brief but lucid. There are sidelights on the wonderful frauds that have been foisted on a gullible public over the last two centuries -- mechanical chess and whist players, etc., -- to lighten a subject which could easily bog down in technicalities. There is an excellent bibliography, a lengthy glossary and an Appendix -- describing computer tables.