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Digital Software Hardware

The Computer Labs That Created the Digital World 48

MrSeb writes "In the time of Socrates, Plato and Cicero, great minds came together in local forums or sophist schools. The Enlightenment of the 18th century was triggered by homely gatherings at salons and fueled by the steaming hotpot of coffeehouses and caffeine. Today we still use forums, of course, and plenty of inventions and insight still originate from coffeehouses, but most innovation occurs in laboratories. ExtremeTech takes a look at the six computer labs that gave birth to the digital world — from Bletchley Park in Blighty, to PARC labs in Palo Alto, and everything in between."
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The Computer Labs That Created the Digital World

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  • Re:Volta Labs? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by webmistressrachel ( 903577 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @08:57PM (#37125060) Journal

    I hate to tell you this (can't you tell?), but the Ferranti Mark one, based on Alan Turing's Manchester "Baby", was the first commercially produced programmable computer.

    You pesky Americans, always trying to rewrite history! You're modded Insightful, too, and I bet I get "Troll" mods for stating facts, yet again.

  • by lophophore ( 4087 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @09:01PM (#37125086) Homepage

    I think they missed something important...

    Sure, Silicon Valley and Stanford. They get their props.

    But what about 128 ("America's Technology Highway") in Massachusetts, centering around MIT and Harvard?

    Digital, Data General, Wang, Prime -- all from that area. Raytheon. Analog Devices. Symbolics. BBN. The list goes on and on.

    Multix, Tenex -- foundations from which modern interactive operating systems were derived -- from MIT. Harvard has a *computer architecture* named after it.

    Ok. Never mind what I said about Silicon Valley. They were late to the party.

Can anyone remember when the times were not hard, and money not scarce?