The “Baby” Re-born Background to an historic event

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The “Baby” Re-born

  • Background to an historic event

  • Why the replica was built

  • How the replica was built

  • Demonstration of the working machine

The Cathode Ray Tube Store

  • FC Williams and Tom Kilburn

  • How the store worked

  • Kilburn’s important report - December 1947

  • The need for realistic testing

Freddie Williams and Tom Kilburn

Regenerating the information

The Need for Realistic Testing

  • The Small-Scale Experimental Machine

  • Sufficient functionality to be “universal”

  • Sufficiently simple for quick results

  • Designed to be expandable in functionality and capacity

  • Only one arithmetic operation - subtraction

Small-Scale Experimental Machine - schematic diagram

The Illustrated London News

The First Program

  • Reliability gradually improved in June 1948

  • Kilburn’s program to find highest factor of a number

  • It succeeded with a small number after a run of a few seconds at about 11.00 am on 21st June 1948

The First program

Dots & Dashes

The Historic Event

  • The first time in the world that a stored-program computer worked

  • Monday, 21st June 1948, about 11:15

  • The “Baby” was the World’s first Universal Computing Machine

  • Nearly all modern computers are “like” that.

The Small-Scale Experimental Machine Rebuild Project

Project Goal

  • “To construct a working replica of the Manchester University Small-Scale Experimental Machine by Sunday, 21st June 1998 - the 50th anniversary of the successful running of the world's first stored computer program - and to re-run that program.”

SSEM - Design Studies

  • Key documents

  • Analysis of circuits - e.g., Clock Chassis

  • Analysis of photographs - e.g., Typewriter

  • Chassis identification

Dai Edwards’ Drawing of the Clock Circuit

Our CAD clock circuit

Close up of Clock Chassis

Our Computer-Aided-Design Drawing of Chassis Metalwork

SSEM - Acquisition of Parts

The Mark 1 in 1949

Close-up of Mark 1 Typewriter

Cover of War Surplus Catalogue

Catalogue Page with Push Button Unit

Five of the pioneer team in 1998

50th Anniversary

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