KIT Department of Informatics


Geschichte der FakultätStadtmuseum Karlsruhe

At the Technical University of Karlsruhe (today's KIT), the development of computer science as a discipline began in the late 1950s. On the one hand, the Institute of Applied Mathematics was concerned with electronic calculators and programmed on the Zuse 22 computer under the supervision of Karl Nickel, while on the other hand, the Institute for Message Processing and Transmission under Karl Steinbuch promoted programming training on the ER 56 computer. The activities were coordinated at an early stage; both institutes made the computing power of their facilities available to the entire university, even before there was an institutionalized computer center from 1966.

At the beginning of 1969, the Institute of Computer Science was founded under the direction of Karl Nickel, which was initially located at the Faculty of Mathematics. The introduction of the diploma program in Computer Science was in the winter semester 1969/70. The expansion to the Faculty of Computer Science was inspired by the second data processing program of the Federal Government and the supra-regional research program in Computer Science (ÜRF) and so the Faculty of Computer Science was founded on October 1, 1972 as the first such unit for research and teaching with four institutes in Germany.

A lot has happened in the past decades since its foundation. Initially seen as a marginal development, computer science has now become a key technology of the 21st century. Computer science systems have penetrated our living environment and are the basis of countless devices and applications that make our everyday lives easier and that hardly anyone would want to do without. Today, the Faculty of Computer Science at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology is one of the most diverse and renowned computer science faculties in Germany, and computer scientists from Karlsruhe, with their research achievements, provide impulses for many achievements of the information society - then as now.