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Edward McCluskey Provides the First Step Toward Automation of Logic Minimalization

Photograph of Edward J. McCluskey

Edward J. McCluskey

A primary goal in electronic circuit design is obtaining the smallest logic circuit (Boolean formula) that represents a given Boolean function or truth table. In his Ph.D. thesis in electrical engineering at MIT entitled Algebraic Minimization and the Design of Two-Terminal Contact Networks (1956) Edward J. McCluskey developed the first algorithm for designing combinational circuits — the Quine-McCluskey logic minimization procedure. This was the first step toward automation of logic minimization that could be implemented on a computer. This enabled the design automation methods that made production of complex computer chips possible. 

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