[SIGCIS-Members] 17th-19th c. exhibitions of computers

Theodore Lekkas tlekkas at phs.uoa.gr
Wed Mar 19 01:44:11 PDT 2008

Dear Bernard,

Telly Tympas and myself happened to have presented a paper on aspects of
the history of display of calculating and related artifacst at World Fairs
(it has been published as: Aristotle Tympas and Theodore Lekkas,
"Certainties and Doubts in World Fair Comparisons of Computing Artifacts",
in East and West: The Common European Heritage, XXV Scientific Instrument
Symposium Proceedings, Ewa Wyka, Maciej Kluza, Anna Karolina Zawada
(editors), Jagiellonian University Museum, Krakow, Poland, 2006,
(I would gladly sent you a copy if you want to look at it and you
have difficulties finding the book).

Telly had a stored box with archival material from research on the history
of display of computers at several World Fairs, to which I have added
references from the secondary literature. If you want something more
specific, I could go back and check that stored box.

Theodore Lekkas

> Hi SIGCIS members,
>      I'm doing some research on the 20th century exhibition of
> computers, particularly in the form of automata and televised
> calculating machines.  I'd like to look for some historical
> precedents, though.  Does anyone know of any works discussing the
> exhibition of calculating machines from the 17th through the 19th
> century?  For example, in the 19th century calculating machines were
> sent to at least one World's Fair, and in in the 18th c. von
> Kempelen's chess playing Turk inspired popular speculations and
> exciting about thinking machines, etc.
>      Thanks for your help.
> Bernard
> Bernard Geoghegan
> Doctoral Candidate, Program in Screen Cultures, Northwestern University
> Institute Visitor, Program in Science, Technology and Society,
> Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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