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Arnold Spielberg

Arnold Spielberg
Born Arnold Meyer Spielberg
(1917-02-06) 6 February 1917
Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Fields Electrical Engineer
Known for GE-200_series
Notable awards Computer Pioneer Award 2006 Computer Pioneer Award

Arnold Meyer Spielberg (born 6 February 1917) is an American electrical engineer instrumental in contributions "to real-time data acquisition and recording that significantly contributed to the definition of modern feedback and control processes".[1] For General Electric[2] he designed, with his colleague Charles Propster, the GE-225 in 1959.[3] 'He cites as his greatest contribution the first computer-controlled “point of sale” cash register.' [4] He is the father of Steven Spielberg.


  • Biography 1
  • Work 2
  • Publications 3
  • References 4


Arnold Spielberg is the son of Rebecca (Chechick) and Samuel Spielberg,[5] who were both born in Ukraine, and immigrated to the United States. They met and married in Cincinnati, where Arnold was born.

From the age of 9, he began building radios. He scrounged parts from garbage cans to assemble a first crystal set. "At 15, Arnold became a ham radio operator, building his own transmitter, a skill that proved fortuitous when he enlisted in the U.S. Army in January 1942, one month after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, and joined the Signal Corps." After training as a radio-gunner for the Air Corps his skills in the design of new airplane antennas elevated him to Communications Chief of a B-25 Squadron in India.[4]

Leah Posner, a talented concert pianist, married Spielberg in January 1945. After graduating from the University of Cincinnati with a BS in Electrical Engineering, he joined RCA Advanced Development Department in 1949 where he did early work on servo and guidance systems.

Mr. Spielberg retired in 1991 but continued consulting for technology companies as well as working with the USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education, formerly Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, an organization founded by his son, Steven Spielberg.


When RCA entered the computer field Spielberg began doing early circuit designs implementing computer logic. Moving into systems design, he was responsible for the design of a tape-to-tape data sorter. He designed and patented the first electronic library system, implemented as an interrogation system for data stored on an array of magnetic tapes. Promoted to Manager of Advanced Product Development he was given responsibility for development of a "Point of Sales" System. The system involved a central processing computer called Recorder Central with ten satellites, specially designed point of sale units. All data was error checked by feedback data verification. The system had all the capabilities of today's point of sale systems, including price look up on a large drum storage unit, calculating sales transactions including sales tax, discounts, and credit verification.[1]

In 1957s Spielberg began working for General Electric. Here he was instrumental in developing the G.E. 200 series.[6] The GE-225 was derived from the GE-312 and 412 Process control computers. Spielberg and Chuck Prosper had worked together at RCA on BIZMAC before designing the GE-225, introduced in 1960.



  1. ^ a b "Arnold M. Spielberg". 
  2. ^ "A Portrait of the GE Computer Department". 
  3. ^ "It’s BASIC: Arnold Spielberg and the Birth of... - GE Reports". 
  4. ^ a b "A close encounter with Steven Spielberg’s dad - Hollywood". Jewish Journal. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "G.E. 200 Series Computers". 
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