EDSAC Replica Project Aims

The goal of the project is to build an authentic working replica of the EDSAC computer and to run a program on it as was done when the original machine was demonstrated in May 1949.

Our target is to do this by 2015.

The project has the following supporting objectives:

  • To provide a tangible demonstration of the achievements of the Cambridge pioneers.
  • To celebrate the achievements of British scientific and technological contributions to the early development of computing.
  • To assemble archive material relating to this historic machine and capture the knowledge of the few remaining pioneers who developed and used it.
  • To build as authentic a replica as possible taking into account the availability of components and materials and modern safety standards.
  • To undertake the work within the spirit of the designers and technology of the time.
  • To produce a working artefact of exceptional educational value to students and the general public.
  • To be an exemplar of British engineering and encourage new students to take up computing and engineering.
  • To demonstrate the working machine to the public as often as is practical once it is built and commissioned at The National Museum of Computing.
  • To acquire sufficient spares to keep the machine running for the next 25 years.
  • To train a new generation of volunteers, unfamiliar with 1940s valve technology, to run, demonstrate and maintain it for the foreseeable future.