I posted a little while back about the good news Bletchley Park received and said that I’d like to visit and take a look around the National Computer Museum
Well as a bit of a weird coincidence I’d completely forgotten that we’d arranged a visit to Milton Keynes on the Saturday immediately after the post
Said friends actually live in the Bletchley area which made things even easier so I dragged one of my friends along
After that we had a quick look through the huts where all the code breaking took place
Then it was onto the part I’d been waiting for and the National computer museum where we got to see the Colossus rebuild project
Colossus was the world’s first programmable computer.
Calculations were performed using valves and the black valve on the left of this picture is an original valve used during the war! Apparently they have about 10 years worth of spare valves so if you have any old gadgets lying around that have valves they welcome donations
The rebuild project has been led for the last 14 years (!) by the legend that is Tony Sale. Most of the documentation was restored and whole project started from just 8 1945 photographs and some fragments of circuit diagrams some of the original engineers had been keeping illegally (good job geeks are hoarders!)
It was onto the museum proper after that and I was in my element!
Calculators and PDA’s! I had one of the Psion’s in this picture!
The very first PC we owned had one of these in. Along with 8MB of RAM, a 50MB hard disk and a quad speed CD-ROM
I’ll stop there….as you have probably guessed I took a ton of photo’s which I then spent the next week boring friends and family with
I had a great time with my only “criticism” (not really the right word) was I was expecting to see more hardware as there appears to be lots of gaps in the time periods (Other than a PET I didn’t see much commodore kit for example). But I do understand it’s still pretty new and things are being added all the time and they are running on a shoestring (donate!!) as the museum itself is free! It’s Bletchely Park you have to pay to get in
If you have any interest in computer history do something to support our computing heritage!
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