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Archive for the ‘colossus’ tag

Alan Turing collection saved

Posted on 10th Mar 2011 at 12:02 by Harry Butler with 5 comments

Harry Butler
Back in issue 89 of Custom PC, you may remember that our own ex-news hound Gareth Halfacree wrote about his efforts to raise funds in order to purchase a rare collection of Alan Turing's papers. Through the power of Twitter and a generous donation from Google of $100,000, Gareth raised just under £90,000 for the Bletchley Park Trust so that it might purchase the documents for public display.

The collection, originally property of Professor Max Newman, a friend and colleague of Turing's at Bletchley Park, includes offprints of 15 of Turing's 18 published works, along with Newman's annotations. The collections is so significant because very little remains of Turing's work or personal belongings, with much of Bletchley Park's documents and records destroyed after World War II.

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Books You Should Own: Core Memory

Posted on 10th Mar 2009 at 10:09 by Alex Watson with 15 comments

Alex Watson
A few years ago, I was helping a friend build a PC with a selection of left-over, scavenged and second hand bits, including a fairly crusty Epox motherboard. We’d spread all the components over the kitchen table and work surfaces and were just about to start the build when his Dad returned from work. My friend's father spent almost his whole career working for BT, beginning as an apprentice engineer tinkering around with old call exchanges, before progressing onwards and upwards into projects, paperwork and management.

Rather than being upset with the fact we’d covered the kitchen with PC kit, he was fascinated by it - particularly the motherboard. Having cut his teeth as an engineer on analogue exchanges, a six-layer PCB bristling with capacitors, ICs and silver circuit traces was, to him, a slice of pure future (even though neither my friend nor I had given it much consideration, beyond hoping it would still POST and get us into Battlefield 1942).

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