Wednesday: Museum of Computing

Wednesday 4/6/2003And so back to Britain, pausing only to bump into a pal at the airport. "Missed your diary over the last two weeks," he said.

Wednesday 4/6/2003
And so back to Britain, pausing only to bump into a pal at the airport. "Missed your diary over the last two weeks," he said. "Thought you'd probably been sacked." Cheers, mate. What's changed in my absence? Surprisingly little: my first forays online for a fortnight reveal that there's a nasty virus going around infecting Windows users, the Home Office is pretending that 6,000 critical responses to the ID card proposal never happened, no weapons of mass destruction have been found, Sendo is suing someone about Smartphones, Apple's launched some dodgy software without testing it properly, Microsoft is worried about Linux, SCO is being an absolute arse and nobody's happy with chip sales. Honestly, IT, can't you come up with something new over 14 days? The best thing that happened -- and the only one I'm sorry I missed -- was the opening of the Museum of Computing. Confusingly run by the University of Bath but housed in Swindon, this is a large collection of truly ancient devices culled from the deep prehistory of the microcomputer. You can see one such antediluvian antique in operation here and I must say it's brave of him going in expecting they'll let him out without slapping him behind glass at the first possible opportunity. The curator, collector Simon Webb, is actively considering other new exhibits, and has been spotted musing online about a display about "what would have happened if technology stopped at the ZX81." A noble thought: the idea of building a mobile phone out of 1981 circuitry is curiously appealing. Would be the size of a small house, of course, perhaps even a chicken shed. I must get back to Sweden at once and start work...

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