Oldest operational computer was Re: cctalk Digest, Vol 54, Issue

Gordon JC Pearce gordonjcp at gjcp.net
Sun Feb 17 05:03:39 CST 2008

On Thu, 2008-02-14 at 12:56 -0500, William Donzelli wrote:

> >  That's probably covered by the "modern knowledge" part of the aforementioned
> >  post
> If you have modern knowledge, and all that knowledge it built on, just
> make an Intel Core 2.
> >  See above though - depends how much of a factor the "modern knowledge" part
> >  is. If people of 1900 knew how a tube worked, but just couldn't make a very
> >  good one...
> People in 1906 did not know how a tube worked. And barely how to make
> them or use them.

I think one of us is missing the point.  Whether it's you or me I can't
tell yet.

I read the very original post, about whether or not it would be possible
to make a digital computer with the technology of the early 1900s as
"Send a list member from 2008 back to 1900 and see if they can make a
computer" - perhaps I misunderstood the question.

If that's the correct premise, then I'd say yes, it's very likely that
someone from 2008 could time-travel back to 1900 and (assuming money,
tools and a workshop, and possibly some assistants) build a working
digital computer.

Now to test this, we're going to need a TARDIS and Tony Duell...


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