Researchers to build Babbage Analytical Engine

Over the next decade, a group of researchers in the UK will attempt to construct a working version of Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine, which he dreamed up a hundred years ago, but did not complete. John Markoff has the story in the New York Times today, and here's a related interactive feature. Cory blogged about the project recently on Boing Boing, and the legacy of Babbage, a great mathematician, philisopher, and engineer, is a favorite topic in our archives (see links below).


  1. “…Analytical Engine, which he dreamed up a hundred years ago…”?  Not unless he dreamed after dying. 

  2. I wonder how Steve Jobs would have introduced it?

    “And  one more thing. It’s made entirely of metal. No more wood, with its annoying creaking and flammability. Metal, with retina-resolution ivory dials.”

  3. But where are they going to get Solominic gold for the punchcards?  <—-Anathem reference, if  you didn't get it, Google it and then read the book, it's worth it!

  4. Okay, stupid commenting system won’t let me edit my comment.  CRYPTONOMICON reference not Anathem.  Sheesh.

  5. @mwm8180 no, that’s his Difference Engine, basically a calculator.  The Analytical Engine is a true computer.

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