WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF COMPUTER THERAPY?

SENIOR ACCREDITED PSYCHOTHERAPIST / COUNSELLOR -Dr.Fawzy Masaoud-LONDON, ENGLAND

Development of the first computers made it possible to process mathematical symbols at a rapid  rate. Programming languages to  deal  with linguistic symbols soon followed  and, with  steady  refinement, have allowed easy programming to process language strings that can  express quite complex meanings. With the advent of on-line computing, in which each user interacts directly with the  computer through a computer terminal rather than indirectly,  immediate computer responses to user inputs became possible. Time-sharing techniques permit a single computer to interact simultaneously with many  users, dramatically reducing computing costs (now less than $1 per hour on some  machines).  Harnessing the  interactive computer medium to psychotherapeutic tasks seemed a natural step in the rapidly growing use of computers, and proponents  prophesied  widespread  availability of expert and inexpensive computer therapies.

By 1965, a program that crudely simulated Rogerian  psychotherapy had been developed  (see  Weizenbaum,  1966). Colby, who has been a seminal and…

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