In 1956 the German computer scientist Karl Steinbuch coined the word Informatik by publishing a paper called Informatik: Automatische Informationsverarbeitung (“Informatics: Automatic Information Processing”).[1] The English term Informatics is sometimes understood as meaning the same as computer science. The German word Informatik is usually translated to English as computer science.

The French term informatique was coined in 1962 by Philippe Dreyfus[2] together with various translations—informatics (English), also proposed independently and simultaneously by Walter F. Bauer and associates who co-founded Informatics Inc., and informatica (Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Portuguese, Dutch), referring to the application of computers to store and process information.

The term was coined as a combination of “information” and “automatic” to describe the science of automating information interactions. The morphology—informat-ion + –ics—uses “the accepted form for names of sciences, as conics, linguistics, optics, or matters of practice, as economics, politics, tactics”,[3] and so, linguistically, the meaning extends easily to encompass both the science of information and the practice of information processing.

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