Reading Comprehension Quiz

Use the dictionary, the acronym finder, and the word origins dictionary (links above) as needed. A new quiz is available each Monday through Thursday. This is the quiz for April 21.

What Alan Turing did was to dream up an imaginary machine capable somehow of reading instructions encoded on a tape. As the scanner moved from one square of the tape to the next, the output could replicate logical human thought.

The device quickly acquired a name: the Turing machine, and so did another of Turing's insights. Since the instructions on the tape governed the behavior of the machine, by changing those instructions one could induce the machine to perform various functions. In other words, depending on the tape it scanned, the same machine could calculate numbers, play chess, or do anything else of a comparable nature.

1. The imaginary machine eventually became
A. the tape player.
B. the typewriter.
C. the computer.
D. the calculator.
2. The Latin word origin of replicate means
A. to restore.
B. to repeat.
C. to reject.
D. to reduce.
3. An outstanding feature of tape is
A. its ability for information to be changed on it.
B. its ability to be replaced.
C. its ability to be compared.
D. its ability to calculate.
4. The meaning of function in this context is
A. a social event.
B. a mathematical relation.
C. performance of duties.
D. what something is used for.

The information comes from an article by Paul Gray at Time Magazine Most Important People of the Century.

Write down your answers and then see Answer Key below.

Answer Key: 1-C..........2-B..........3-A..........4-D
Corrections? Questions? Comments? E-mail Robert Jackson at