Bletchley Park, UK. 27th June, 2013. A valve on the 'Half Adder' on a new replica of the EDSAC computer,( the world's first practical general purpose computer originally built at Cambridge University), which is now being re-created at The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park. First working parts of the EDSAC reconstruction are demonstrated at a celebration of the centenary Sir Maurice Wilkes, father of British computing. Credit: John Robertson/Alamy Live News

- Image ID: D9WMN8
Bletchley Park, UK. 27th June, 2013. A valve on the 'Half Adder' on a new replica of the EDSAC computer,( the world's first practical general purpose computer originally built at Cambridge University), which is now being re-created at The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park. First working parts of the EDSAC reconstruction are demonstrated at a celebration of the centenary Sir Maurice Wilkes, father of British computing. Credit: John Robertson/Alamy Live News
John Robertson / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: D9WMN8
A valve on the 'Half Adder' on a new replica of the EDSAC computer,( the world's first practical general purpose computer originally built at Cambridge University), which is now being re-created at The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park. Photo by John Robertson, 2013. 27th June, 2013. First working parts of the EDSAC reconstruction are demonstrated at a celebration of the centenary Sir Maurice Wilkes, father of British computing The centenary of the birth of Sir Maurice Wilkes, widely regarded as the father of British computing, has been celebrated with a demonstration of the first working parts of the recreation of EDSAC to be built and displayed at The National Museum of Computing on Bletchley Park. EDSAC, originally designed by a team led by Wilkes at the University of Cambridge in 1947, was the world's first practical general purpose computer. Built to provide a computing service rather than just a computer, EDSAC's impact on both science and business were profound. By enabling complex and time-consuming calculations to be performed automatically and rapidly, it widened research horizons and led to three Nobel Prizes in different disciplines. In the business world, a copy of EDSAC, known as LEO, became the world's first commercial computer. At the Wilkes' centenary celebrations, the first components of the EDSAC reconstruction including its internal clock were demonstrated to an audience that included Wilkes' family members and an operator of the original EDSAC. The recreation of EDSAC, when completed by a team of volunteers in two years' time, will be used to inform the public about Britain's rich computer heritage and to inspire young people to learn about engineering and computer science, skills in short supply in today's economy. Andrew Herbert, leader of the EDSAC Replica Project, said: "Sir Maurice Wilkes is in the pantheon of computer greats. His practical vision was liberating and the impact of his work was profound. EDSAC spee
Location: Bletchley, UK