Bletchley Park and The National Museum of Computing
Each year for my birthday I like to take a week off work, go explore and take in a museum or two. This year I’ve done a return visit and dragged the wife along to Bletchley Part and The National Museum of Computing (TNMC) and yet again come away thinking they are Awesome!
These are two separate museums in the same location, both can be visited in a day but why rush! Also its worth noting that TNMC only open Thursday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 12pm – 5pm.
The home of the code breakers during the war. If you have watched The Imitation Game then you will know all about this place. If not this was a secret group setup during the second world war to try and crack the German enigma codes used to encrypt their messages. With 150,000,000,000,000 different combinations they were struggling to come up with a solution. In comes Alan Turing, Gordon Welchman and with help from other mathematicians come up with a plan to build a mechanical device to tackle the problem.
The device was called the Bombe and searched all possible combinations of the Enigma machine until it found a set of settings which could decode all of the German messages for that day.
It was amazing work and its well worth going to learn more about the people who worked there and what they did.
The National Museum of Computing (TNMC)
I love the TNMC, its an amazing site when you walk in. If you love old computers like me then its nerd heaven! You will find all kinds of computers here from the more common the ZX spectrum’s and Amiga’s to rare Cray super computers and a reconstruction of Colossus, the world’s first electronic computer. Also if you are into satellites they also have a really nice area where they communicate with the Fun Cube Satellite
Both are great places to visit so why not make a weekend of it!