Feeds

Babbage boffins build heavyweight printer

New device not ideal for mobile use

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

High performance access to file storage

In a world fixated with time-to-market issues, it is refreshing to discover a newly launched printer that has been a mere 150 years in development. The London Science Museum has completed a mechanical printer originally designed by Charles Babbage as an output device for his Difference Engine, widely regarded to be the first computer. Although Babbage never completed the Difference Engine, largely due to the relatively unsophisticated engineering processes of the 19th Century, boffins at the museum successfully built one from his original drawings in 1991. Now the 2.5 ton monster printer is complete, navigation tables produced by the mechanical computer - no luggable itself, weighing in at 3 tons - can be automatically printed. And the printer is surprisingly advanced. It can text wrap and can be programmed for different column widths and line spacing. It can even produce printing plates for use in a conventional printing press. ® World's first erratumnotbug Science Museum technicians claim that they found a number of mistakes in the design of both the Difference Engine and the new printer, which they believe were deliberately included by Babbage in a bid to prevent industrial espionage. The same excuse is, of course, used today by leading chip makers to explain inadequacies in their products. Related story Byron's daughter was first programmer... NOT

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Nokia offers 'voluntary retirement' to 6,000+ Indian employees
India's 'predictability and stability' cited as mobe-maker's tax payment deadline nears
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
France bans managers from contacting workers outside business hours
«Email? Mais non ... il est plus tard que six heures du soir!»
Adrian Mole author Sue Townsend dies at 68
RIP Blighty's best-selling author of the 1980s
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Analysts: Bright future for smartphones, tablets, wearables
There's plenty of good money to be made if you stay out of the PC market
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.