NASA 的第一位软件工程师:玛格丽特 · 汉密尔顿 Matt Porter and Margaret Hamilton: NASA's first software engineer: Margaret Hamilton

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演员: Matt Porter and Margaret Hamilton


台词
At roughly 4pm on July 20, 1969,
1969 年 7 月 20 日, 大约下午四点,
mankind was just minutes away from landing on the surface of the moon.
人类离降落月球表面 只差几分钟的路程。
But before the astronauts began their final descent,
但是在宇航员开始 着手最后的降落之前,
an emergency alarm lit up.
有一个紧急信号灯亮起了。
Something was overloading the computer,
有某样东西造成了电脑超负荷,
and threatened to abort the landing.
导致登月舱可能需要迫降。
Back on Earth, Margaret Hamilton held her breath.
地面上的玛格丽特·汉密尔顿 (Margaret Hamilton) 摒住了呼吸。
She'd led the team developing the pioneering in-flight software,
她领导的团队负责开发 开创性的飞行软件,
so she knew this mission had no room for error.
所以她知道这次任务必须万无一失。
But the nature of this last-second emergency
但是在这最后关头 发生的紧急情况,
would soon prove her software was working exactly as planned.
很快将证明她的软件 正在如计划正常运作。
Born 33 years earlier in Paoli, Indiana, Hamilton had always been inquisitive.
出生在印第安纳州保利(Paoli), 今年 33 岁的汉密尔顿总是充满好奇。
In college, she studied mathematics and philosophy,
大学期间,她主修的是数学和哲学,
before taking a research position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
之后在麻省理工学院 取得了一个研究岗位,
to pay for grad school.
以支付研究生院的学费。
Here, she encountered her first computer while developing software
在这儿,她首次接触了电脑,
to support research into the new field of chaos theory.
开发了支援研究混沌理念 这个新领域的软件。
Next at MIT's Lincoln Laboratory,
随后,在麻省理工学院的林肯实验室,
Hamilton developed software for America’s first air defense system
汉密尔顿为美国的第一个 防空系统开发出了
to search for enemy aircraft.
用以侦察敌机的软件。
But when she heard that renowned engineer Charles Draper
但当她听说著名工程师 查尔斯 · 德雷帕(Charles Draper)
was looking for help sending mankind to the moon,
在找将人类送上月球的助手时,
she immediately joined his team.
她马上加入了他的团队。
NASA looked to Draper and his group of over 400 engineers
美国航空航天局(NASA)指望德雷帕 以及他由 400 多名工程师组成的团队
to invent the first compact digital flight computer,
能够发明出第一台 小型数字飞行计算机,
the Apollo Guidance Computer.
阿波罗制导计算机。
Using input from astronauts,
这套装置会根据宇航员输入的信息
this device would be responsible for guiding, navigating
进行导航、矫正航线,
and controlling the spacecraft.
并控制航天飞船。
At a time when unreliable computers filled entire rooms,
那个时候的电脑不仅不可靠, 还大到能塞满整个房间,
the AGC needed to operate without any errors,
而阿波罗制导计算机 在运作时必须零失误,
and fit in one cubic foot of space.
并且能放进一立方英尺的空间中。
Draper divided the lab into two teams,
德雷帕将实验室分为两个组,
one for designing hardware and one for developing software.
一个团队设计计算机硬件, 另一个团队开发软件。
Hamilton led the team that built the on-board flight software
汉密尔顿领导的团队负责 开发主板飞行软件,
for both the Command and Lunar Modules.
运用于命令舱和登月舱。
This work, for which she coined the term “software engineering,"
她为这项下了大赌注的工作 取了一个名字,
was incredibly high stakes.
叫做“软件工程”。
Human lives were on the line, so every program had to be perfect.
由于人命关天, 所以每个程序必须能够完美执行。
Margaret’s software needed to quickly detect unexpected errors
玛格丽特的软件需要 快速检测到未预期的错误,
and recover from them in real time.
并且即时修复它们。
But this kind of adaptable program was difficult to build,
但是这种随机应变的软件 是非常难开发的,
since early software could only process jobs in a predetermined order.
因为早期软件的修复只能 依照事先设置的顺序执行。
To solve this problem,
为了解决这个问题,
Margaret designed her program to be “asynchronous,”
玛格丽特将她的程序设计成“非同步”,
meaning the software's more important jobs would interrupt less important ones.
意思是这个软件会打断相对 不重要的工作,先执行重要的工作。
Her team assigned every task a unique priority
她的团队针对每个任务 指定独一无二的优先权,
to ensure that each job occurred in the correct order
以确保每个工作能依照正确顺序,
and at the right time— regardless of any surprises.
在正确的时间点运行—— 无论发生什么意外。
After this breakthrough,
在实现这个突破性的进展后,
Margaret realized her software could help the astronauts work
玛格丽特意识到她的软件 同样可以帮助宇航员
in an asynchronous environment as well.
在非同步的环境下工作。
She designed Priority Displays
她设计了优先级显示,
that would interrupt astronaut’s regularly scheduled tasks
将会打断宇航员按计划执行的任务,
to warn them of emergencies.
以此来警告他们发生的紧急情况。
The astronaut could then communicate with Mission Control
宇航员随后可以和任务控制中心沟通,
to determine the best path forward.
以确定最佳的前进路线。
This marked the first time flight software communicated directly—
这标志着飞行软件第一次直接
and asynchronously— with a pilot.
与飞行员进行异步沟通。
It was these fail safes that triggered the alarms just before the lunar landing.
正是这些故障保险 在登月前触发了警告。
Buzz Aldrin quickly realized his mistake—
巴兹·奥尔德林(Buzz Aldrin) 快速意识到了他的错误,
he’d inadvertently flipped the rendezvous radar switch.
他不小心碰到了会合点雷达开关。
This radar would be essential on their journey home,
这个雷达在返程中十分重要,
but here it was using up vital computational resources.
但此刻,它消耗了重要的计算资源。
Fortunately, the Apollo Guidance Computer was well equipped to manage this.
幸运的是,阿波罗制导计算机 有足够的装备来处理这个问题。
During the overload, the software restart programs
在这次超负荷发生期间, 软件重启了程序,
allowed only the highest priority jobs to be processed—
只处理最高优先级的工作——
including the programs necessary for landing.
包括项目中必须执行的降落。
The Priority Displays gave the astronauts a choice—
这个优先级显示, 给了宇航员一个机会
to land or not to land.
选择降落还是不降落。
With minutes to spare, Mission Control gave the order.
在还剩最后几分钟的紧要关头, 任务控制中心下达了命令。
The Apollo 11 landing was about the astronauts, Mission Control,
阿波罗 11 号的降落 在宇航员、任务控制中心、
software and hardware all working together as an integrated system of systems.
软件和硬件的协作下得以成功完成。
Hamilton’s contributions were essential to the work of engineers and scientists
肯尼迪总统的登月目标 鼓舞了工程师和科学家开展这项工作,
inspired by President John F. Kennedy’s goal to reach the Moon.
而汉密尔顿对这次任务功不可没。
And her life-saving work went far beyond Apollo 11—
她从事过的性命攸关的工作 不只体现在阿波罗 11 号上,
no bugs were ever found in the in-flight software for any crewed Apollo missions.
所有阿波罗载人任务的飞行软件 都从未出现任何漏洞。
After her work on Apollo,
在她完成阿波罗计划之后,
Hamilton founded a company that uses its unique universal systems language
汉密尔顿成立了一家公司, 使用其独特的通用系统语言
to create breakthroughs for systems and software.
来为多种系统和软件创造突破。
In 2003, NASA honored her achievements with the largest financial award
2003 年,美国航空航天局 为表彰她的成就,
they’d ever given to an individual.
授予了她最高金额的个人奖励。
And 47 years after her software first guided astronauts to the moon,
在她的软件首次引导 宇航员登月后的 47 年,
Hamilton was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom
汉密尔顿被授予总统自由勋章,
for changing the way we think about technology.
理由是:她改变了我们对科技的思考。