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Automated Teller Machine (ATM) is an indispensable part of our lives now worldwide! John Shepherd-Barron once explained that he came up with the idea of cash dispensers in 1965 while lying in his bath after finding his bank closed. It was then his habit to withdraw money on a Saturday, but on this particular weekend he had arrived one minute late and found the bank doors locked against him.
Later that year, he bumped into the Chief General Manager of Barclays Bank who was about to have lunch. Shepherd-Barron asked him for 90 seconds to pitch his idea for a cash machine.
“I told him I had an idea that if you put your standard Barclays cheque through a slot in the side of the bank, it will deliver standard amounts of money around the clock.”
“He said, ‘Come and see me on Monday morning’.”
Barclays commissioned Shepherd-Barron to build six cash dispensers, the first of which was installed at a branch in the north London suburb of Enfield on June 27, 1967. The first person to withdraw cash was actor Reg Varney, a celebrity resident of Enfield known for his part in a number of popular television series. An early deployment of this device outside of the UK took place in Zurich in November, 1967.
Shepherd-Barron was born at Shillong, India in 1925 to British parents and later served in the Indian Army in Second Airborne division where he taught Gurkhas to parachute.He also invented the PIN by recalling his Indian Army number, he had originally intended to make Personal Identification Number (PIN) six digit long, but reduced the number to four when his wife, Caroline, complained that six was too many. “Over the kitchen table, she said she could only remember four figures, so because of her, four figures became the world standard,” he recalled.
All this was possible due to a mathematical prodigy by the name of Srinivasa Ramanujan — A mathematical genius of India. When you put your debit or credit card in the machine and order the machine to dispense the amount of your desire, the machine divides and arranges your money before dispensing it, using Ramanujan’s ‘Partition Theory’.
F. Answer the following questions based on the given passage.
1. What made John Shepherd-Barron to come up with the idea of ATM?
When Shepherd Barron had arrived one minute late, he found the bank doors locked against him. This incident made him come up with the idea of ATM.
2. When and where was the first ATM installed?
The first ATM was installed on June 27, 1967 in the North London suburb of Enfield.
3. Who was the first person to withdraw cash from the ATM?
Actor Reg Varney, a celebrity resident of Enfield was the first person to withdraw cash from the ATM.
4. Why did Shepherd-Barron reduce the PIN number from six digits to four?
Shepherd Barron reduced the PIN number from six digits to four when his wife, Caroline complained that six was too many.
5. Which theory of Ramanujan helps the ATMs to dispense cash?
Partition theory of Ramanujan helps the ATMs to dispense cash.
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