We tend to take our computers and digital devices for granted today. For the most part they have tons of power and are smaller than scientists from decades ago could have ever imagined. The grandfather of today’s digital computers, known as the Baby, turned 60 recently.
Baby took up an entire room and was invented at the University of Manchester. The Baby ran its first successfully executed program on June 21, 1948. The machine was built by Tom Kilburn and Freddie Williams from the University of Manchester and was the first digital computer capable of storing a program.
The system was built using metal Post Office racks, hundreds of valves or vacuum tubes and the keyboard was a series of push buttons and switches vertically mounted. The display was read directly off the face of a Cathode Ray Tube. The system had a computing speed of 1.2ms per instruction.