- Jacquard, Joseph-Marie
died Aug. 7, 1834, OullinsFrench inventor.In 1801 he demonstrated an automatic loom incorporating revolutionary new technology; it was declared public property in 1806, and Jacquard was rewarded with a pension and a royalty on each machine. His loom utilized interchangeable punched cards that controlled the weaving of the cloth so that any desired pattern could be obtained automatically. The Jacquard loom's technology became the basis of the modern automatic loom and a precursor of the modern computer. His punched cards were adapted by Charles Babbage as an input/output medium for his proposed analytical engine and by Herman Hollerith to feed data to his census machine, and punched cards were used for inputting data into early digital computers.
* * *▪ French inventorborn July 7, 1752, Lyon, Francedied Aug. 7, 1834, OullinsFrench inventor of the Jacquard loom (see photograph—>), which served as the impetus for the technological revolution of the textile industry and is the basis of the modern automatic loom.Jacquard first formed the idea for his loom in 1790, but his work was cut short by the French Revolution, in which he fought on the side of the Revolutionaries in the defense of Lyon. In 1801 Jacquard demonstrated an improved drawloom, for which he was awarded a bronze medal. He continued his work, and in 1804–05 he introduced an attachment that has caused any loom that uses it to be called a Jacquard loom (q.v.). In 1806 the loom was declared public property, and Jacquard was rewarded with a pension and a royalty on each machine.His machine aroused bitter hostility among the silk weavers, who feared that its labour-saving capabilities would deprive them of jobs. The weavers of Lyon not only burned machines that were put into production but attacked Jacquard as well. Eventually, the advantages of the loom brought about its general acceptance, and by 1812 there were 11,000 in use in France. In 1819 Jacquard was awarded a gold medal and the Cross of the Legion of Honour. The use of his loom spread to England in the 1820s and from there virtually worldwide.
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