Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

Britain's oldest computer gets a 'reboot'
by Staff Writers
Bletchley Park, England (UPI) Nov 20, 2012

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

The world's oldest original working digital computer has been brought back to life and is going on display at a British computer museum, officials said.

Dubbed The Witch, the computer was the workhorse of Britain's atomic energy research program in the 1950s, but has spent the last 15 years gathering dust in a storeroom, the BBC reported Monday.

Restored to noisy, light-flashing life in a three-year restoration effort, The Witch will reside at the National Museum of Computing in Buckinghamshire.

The 2.5-ton machine was built in 1949 to help researchers in Britain's atomic energy program by speeding up calculations once performed by a bevy of humans with adding machines.

Though achingly slow by modern standards -- it could take up to 10 seconds to multiply two numbers -- it proved very reliable and was in use until 1957 when it was outstripped by faster, smaller computers.

"It's important for us to have a machine like this back in working order as it gives us an understanding of the state of technology in the late 1940s in Britain," said Kevin Murrell, a trustee of The National Museum of Computing in Bletchley Park.

Last U.K-made typewriter goes to museum
Wrexham, Wales (UPI) Nov 20, 2012 - A factory in Wales produced the final typewriter made in Britain and immediately dispatched it to a museum, officials said.

Typewriter manufacturer Brother says it donated the last machine made in its factory in Wrexham to London's Science Museum.

Edward Bryan, a worker at the factory that produced 5.9 million typewriters since opening in 1985, made the last one.

"If people ever ask me, I can always say now, as a strange question, that I've made the last typewriter in the U.K.," he told the BBC.

The typewriter is widely considered as helping many women to enter the workforce, and still has "a special place in the hearts" of members of the public, said Phil Jones, head of Brother in Britain.

"Because of this, and the typewriter's importance in the history of business communication, we felt that giving it a home at the Science Museum would be a fitting tribute."

Brother said it stopped making typewriters in Britain because of lack of demand. Although it still had significant sales in the United States, its factory in the Far East produces enough typewriters to serve that market.


Related Links
Space Technology News - Applications and Research

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Smartphones crushing point-and-shoot camera market
Tokyo (AFP) Nov 21, 2012
The soaring popularity of smartphones is crushing demand for point-and-shoot cameras, threatening the once-vibrant sector as firms scramble to hit back with web-friendly features and boost quality, analysts say. A sharp drop in sales of digital compact cameras marks them as the latest casualty of smartphones as videogame consoles and portable music players also struggle against the all-in-on ... read more

China's Chang'e-3 to land on moon next year

Moon crater yields impact clues

Study: Moon basin formed by giant impact

NASA's LADEE Spacecraft Gets Final Science Instrument Installed

Martian And Terran History Finding a common denominator

Meteorites reveal warm water existed on Mars

NASA Rover Providing New Weather and Radiation Data About Mars

CU LASP package ready for MAVEN integration bound for Mars

NASA Selects Information Technology Flight Operations Support Contract

SciTechTalk: All work and no play?

Get some bed rest - all 21 days of it

Latest China military hardware displayed at airshow

Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

China to launch manned spacecraft

Tiangong 1 Parked And Waiting As Shenzhou 10 Mission Prep Continues

Three ISS crew return to Earth in Russian capsule

Station Crew Off Duty After Undocking

Space station command changes

Russia restores space contact after cable rupture

France, Germany seek Ariane compromise at ESA space meet

ILS Launches the EchoStar XVI Satellite

Arianespace's fourth Spaceport mission with Soyuz ready for fueling

Ariane 5's sixth launch of 2012

Rare image of Super-Jupiter sheds light on planet formation

Astronomers Directly Image Massive Star's 'Super-Jupiter'

NASA's Kepler Wraps Prime Mission, Begins Extension

Lowell astronomer, collaborators point the way for exoplanet search

Smartphones crushing point-and-shoot camera market

Britain's oldest computer gets a 'reboot'

Global mobile data traffic doubled in year: Ericsson

China sets special funds to boost rare earth sector

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement