This is the Harwell Dekatron, aka Wolverhampton Instrument for Teaching Computation (WITCH), a 61-year-old machine that was rebooted yesterday to become "the world's oldest original working digital computer." Originally operated at the Harwell Atomic Energy Research Establishment, it was moved in 1957 to Wolverhampton's Staffordshire Technical College where it was dubbed the WITCH. There it stayed until retirement in 1973 when it became a museum display before dismantling for storage. In 2008, the National Museum of Computing in Bletchley Park began to restore the valve-laden beast. "The world's oldest original working digital computer"
I was going through my copy of Stewart Brand’s 1974 book, II Cybernetic Frontiers (1974) when I came across this sketch by computer scientist Alan Kay, who conceived of a tablet computer in 1972 called the Dynabook. Although it used a stylus and a keyboard, his 43-year-old sketch of two kids sitting in the grass […]
In 1974 a man with a communications disorder made history when he ordered a pizza over the phone with a talking computer built by Michigan State University’s Artificial Language Laboratory. He tried calling Dominoes four times, but they thought it was a prank and hung up on him. But another pizza delivery service took the […]
In part one of a series, the limitations of color on eighties-era computers and early game consoles like NES and Commodore 64.
Handheld radios might seem a bit archaic, but in an emergency situation, few things will keep you as reliably connected to the outside world. This Emergency Multi-Function Radio & Flashlight takes the utility of the tried-and-true radio and combines it with a powerful flashlight and self-sufficient energy system. It’s available in the Boing Boing Store for […]
Few programming languages boast the versatility and user-friendliness of Python, which is why it’s the first language of choice for many aspiring programmers. Regardless of your experience level, you can take the first step to becoming Python-savvy with the Python 3 Bootcamp Bundle, available in the Boing Boing Store for $35 this week. Featuring more than […]
We live during a time where cyberattacks regularly make news headlines, so it should come as no surprise that cybersecurity professionals are experiencing a surge in demand at even the entry level, making now the ideal time to learn the tools of the trade if you’re considering a career switch. The 2018 Supercharged Cybersecurity Bundle offers […]