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

Brian Randell Brian.Randell at ncl.ac.uk
Wed Mar 19 03:19:57 PDT 2008

At 20:54 -0400 18/3/08, Bernard Geoghegan wrote:
>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 Geoghegan
>Doctoral Candidate, Program in Screen Cultures, Northwestern University
>Institute Visitor, Program in Science, Technology and Society, 
>Massachusetts Institute of Technology

One of the best i know, though slightly out of your time frame, is:

Napier Tercentenary Celebration: Handbook of the Exhibition, ed. E. 
M. Horsburgh, pp. 124-127, Edinburgh, Royal Society of Edinburgh, 
1914. [(Also published as Modern Instruments and Methods of 
Calculation: A Handbook of the Napier Tercentenary Celebration 
Exhibition, G. Bell and Sons, London, 1914.)]


Brian Randell

School of Computing Science, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne,
EMAIL = Brian.Randell at ncl.ac.uk   PHONE = +44 191 222 7923
FAX = +44 191 222 8232  URL = http://www.cs.ncl.ac.uk/~brian.randell/

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