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Automatic Control

An introduction to seven articles about self-regulating machines, which represent a scientific and technological revolution that will powerfully shape the future of man

By Ernest Nagel


It is the fundamental principle that underlies all self-regulating systems, not only machines but also the processes of life and the tides of human affairs

By Arnold Tustin

Control Systems

Many machines already run themselves by feedback. A new species of engineer is now required to orchestrate a whole technological process and its controls in a unified system

By Donald P. Campbell and Gordon S. Brown

An Automatic Chemical Plant

The art of feedback control has attained its highest development in the modern petroleum refinery. Such refineries are not quite fully automatic, but in them we see the shape of plants to come...

By Eugene Ayres

An Automatic Machine Tool

Feedback control has begun to advance in the working of metals. Presenting the first account of a milling machine that converts information on punched tape into the contours of a finished part...

By William Pease

The Role of the Computer

The multifarious control loops of a fully automatic factory must be gathered into one big loop. This can best be done by means of a digital computing mchine

By Louis N. Ridenour


The surprising discovery that it is subject to the same statistical treatment as heat facilitates its storage and handling in automatic control systems

By Gilbert W. King

Machines and Man

What about the economic and social impact of automatic control systems? Can industry afford to buy them, and will they cause widespread technological unemployment?

By Wassily Leontief


  • 50 and 100 Years Ago: September 1952

  • Science and the Citizen: September 1952

  • Letters

    Letters to the Editors, September 1952

  • Recommended


  • Amateur Scientist

    The Amateur Scientist

  • Departments


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