29th January 2023

History of domestic ICT: Anatoly Kitov

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Petr Chachin

August 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Anatoly Ivanovich Kitov (1920 – 2005) – an outstanding Soviet and Russian scientist, one of the pioneers of Russian cybernetics and informatics, computer developer, Doctor of Technical Sciences (1963), professor (1964), engineer Colonel.

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Born on August 9, 1920 in Samara. In 1921, he and his parents moved to Tashkent. He graduated from high school and after three months of study at the Central Asian (Tashkent) University was drafted into the Red Army. Member of the Great Patriotic War.

In 1945, he immediately entered the second year and in 1950 graduated from the faculty of jet armament of the Artillery Academy. F.E. Dzerzhinsky, after which he was sent to the Academy of Artillery Sciences (AAS) as an assistant in the scientific and organizational department.

In parallel with the AAS, he worked as a military representative in SKB-245 of the Ministry of Mechanical Engineering and Instrumentation. In 1952 he defended his Ph.D. thesis. From 1953 to 1954 – Head of the Computer Department, created by him in the AAS. In 1953 – 1955 Kitov became one of the main fighters for the recognition of cybernetics as not a “bourgeois pseudoscience.”

In 1955, together with academician S.L. Sobolev and A.A. Lyapunov published in the journal Voprosy Filosofii a positive article “The main features of cybernetics”, a wide discussion of which led to the recognition and further development of cybernetics in the USSR.

Since 1954 he has been creating the Computing Center of the USSR Ministry of Defense (Computer Center No. 1 of the Moscow Region, later – TsNII 27 of the Ministry of Defense) and directs it. In 1956 he published several monographs and the book “Electronic Digital Machines”, which became the first classical textbook on this topic in the USSR, the first programmers of our country studied on it.

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Under the leadership of A.I. Kitov in 1958 in the Computer Center No. 1 of the Moscow Region, the most powerful in the world at that time, the M-100 tube computer (for one hundred thousand operations per second) and the Udar transistor computer were developed. He also created a department of mathematical support for the design of these computers.

In 1958 he publishes a brochure “Electronic Computing Machines”, in which he substantiates his idea of ​​the need to create a Unified State Network of Computing Centers (EGSVTs) to manage the economy of the USSR.

In January 1959, he sent a letter to the Central Committee of the CPSU addressed to N.S. Khrushchev on the need for large-scale creation and use of computer technology in the country. It played a big role – an interdepartmental commission was created, which prepared a Resolution of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the Council of Ministers of the USSR “On accelerating and expanding the production of computers and their introduction into the national economy.”

In the fall of 1959, he sent a second letter to the head of the CPSU, containing his draft “Red Book” – on the management of the country’s economy and its Armed Forces on the basis of the EGSVTs (dual-purpose project). However, the sharp criticism of the state of affairs with the introduction of computers in the USSR Ministry of Defense and in the highest echelons of the country’s power, contained in this letter, determined the negative attitude towards Kitov’s report on the part of the USSR Ministry of Defense leadership and the apparatus of the CPSU Central Committee. This led in 1960 to Kitov’s expulsion from the CPSU and his removal from his post.

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In 1961 he created the theory of associative programming, and in 1963 he defended his doctoral dissertation on the topic “Application of computers for solving problems of air defense.” From 1965 to 1971 He was at the same time the chief designer of the OASU of the Ministry of Radio Industry of the USSR (MRP), the head of the Main Computer Center of the MRP and the deputy director for science of the NIIAA MRP.

This OASU MRP became typical for nine defense ministries of the USSR. In the MRP, he also created the algorithmic programming language ALGEM (Algorithms Economic and Mathematical), which has become widespread in the country.

In 1971, he directed his efforts to the introduction of information technologies in health care and medicine – he was the chief designer of the Zdravokhraneniye automated control system in the USSR Ministry of Health and an automated control system in the 3rd GU of the USSR Ministry of Health. The author of the algorithmic language NORMIN, which was widely used in programming problems in medicine and health care.

1980 – 1991 A.I. Kitov headed the Department of Computer Science and Programming at the Moscow Institute of National Economy. G.V. Plekhanov. And since 1991 he worked as a professor at the Department of Information Technologies of the Russian Economic Academy. G.V. Plekhanov.

Author of 12 monographs and textbooks. He created a scientific school – under his leadership, more than 40 doctoral and candidate dissertations were defended. Read more with materials about the life and work of A.I. Kitov can be found on the website of the Virtual Computer Museum www.computer-museum.ru.

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Vicky O. Torres

My name is Vicky O. Torres. I am a psychologist by profession, and I love my work very much. And in general, I am an active seeker of truth, silence and beauty of the world.

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