Computing Center of the Moscow State University was founded in 1955 on
the basis of the Computing laboratory of the
Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics. This has been the first
Computing Center affiliated to an educational institution and one of the
first of its kind in the USSR. The purpose of the Center was to educate
highly qualified experts in computing science, both theoretical and applied.
The founder of the Center and its first Director was Prof. Ivan Semyonovich
Berezin, whose influence on the directions and style of research in the
Center could be felt over many years. The activities of the Center are
based on the following basic elements:
- highly qualified staff;
- modern computing facilities;
- leading-edge research;
- undergraduate and postgraduate teaching;
- implementation of modern computing technologies.
The Center has soon acquired the status of a leading national computing
research institution. The first application to be developed and
implemented were to meteorology, space research with satellites and manned
space flights, aerodynamics, electrodynamics, structure analysis,
mathematical economics, ets. There were significant achievements in
the theoretical numerical analysis and programming. A number of staff
were awarded with state orders and medals, Lomonosov Prize of the Moscow
University, State Prize of the USSR and Government Prizes of the USSR.
The Center has always been active in advancing and implementation of modern
computing technologies in the forms of consulting, allocation of computing
time and direct involvement in research projects. The latter activity has
resulted in the largest national library of numerical analysis software.
The implementation of modern computing applications in Moscow University
is one of the first priorities for the center. The scale of the University,
with 30000 undergraduate students and 20000 staff, imposes special
requirements on its management. Computing Center proposed first computerized
information systems for the Administration as early as in the 1970's.
The software packages "Students" and "Admission" were developed and
implemented very quickly, and they have been in the core of the University
management system since that time, support and further development of the
University information systems remain an important part of the Center's
The Center have always been running modern national computing hardware.
The first Soviet mass-production computer "Strela" (Arrow) was installed
at the Center in December 1956. Many cutting-edge ideas of modern computing
were implemented in that early computer. In modern terms it had dedicated
processors for fast execution of short codes and admitted vectorized
codes. A new computer M-20 was installed at the center in 1961, and BESM-4
in 1966. In 1981 the Center was running four BESM-6's, two ES-1022's, one
Minsk-32's, two Mir-2 and "Setun", the first in the world computer fully
based on semiconductors, which had been designed in the Center itself
(and based on the triple arithmetics).
The expertise of the Computing Center staff in programming, numerical
methods, mathematical modelling, etc., has attracted most of large-scale
computing facilities of the University. In order to facilitate the
access of the users, a University-wide computing network has been proposed
as early as in the mid-1970's. Computing Center was naturally the keystone
of this project.
Computing Center has diverse collaborations with many departments of Moscow
University. The contacts have always been maintained with the
laboratory of Computational Mathematics, chaired by the Academicion
A.N. Tikhonov. Andrei Nikolaevich Tikhonov had been the Head of Research
in the Center for almost a quater of century. This was the period of initial
development of Computing Science in Moscow University. The involvement
of the Center into undergraduate teaching was at its maximum during this
period. The staff of the Center were teaching compulsory and specialized
courses, running practicals and maintaining terminal classes. Most of the
teaching at newly formed Faculty of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics
during its first years was the responsibility of the Center staff. Many
former staff of the Center are now members of that Faculty.
The position of the Center in the structure of the University has been
changed several times. In 1955-72 it was an autonomous part of the
Department of Computational Mathematics in the Faculty of Mechanics and
Mathematics. In 1972-82 it was an Institute, named Research Computing
Center (RCC) in the framework of the Faculty of Computational Mathematics
and Cybernetics. Since 1982 the RCC has become one of the five major
research institutes of Moscow University; its director reports to the
After Prof. I.S. Berezin directors of the Computing Center were Academicion
Prof. E.A. Grebenikov and Dr. V.M. Repin. The present
Director is Prof. Alexander Vladimirovich Tikhonravov, DSci.