Eighteen souls braved one of the two glorious March afternoons England had and stayed in. They may have missed the sunshine, but instead they were treated to the sights of the mechanical levers, valves, diodes and transistors of The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park. Given that the tour was held virtually, and was hosted by two highly knowledgeable guides throughout, we missed nothing important. The guides talked us through the main exhibits, including not only the earliest machines used to help decode the German Enigma cypher in World War II, the Turing-Welchman Bombe and Colossus of the 1940s but also the world’s oldest working computer.
Using the wealth of physical exhibits at TNMOC as it is colloquially known, we were expertly guided through the large systems and mainframes of the 1950s, 60s and 70s, to the rise of personal computing and the rise of mobile computing and the internet.