Computers and Robots of Old

In the process of wondering in a recent issue of [Asimov’s][1] about what kinds of litigation robots will spawn in the near future, Robert Silverberg provides a terrific, [brief history of fictional robots][2], from Gelula’s “Automaton” of 1931 to AT&T’s Zippy. I began looking around for more histories of robots, and of computers, too, and came across two great lists:

* Joshua Glenn’s [The Coolest Robots of Pre-Golden Age SF](, and
* Bruce Franklin’s [Computers in Fiction](

I know that Willard McCarty has begun a history of computers and computing in more serious forms of discourse, but his survey may have already encompassed these examples. If not, then there is something to be done here.