Below you can get a glimpse of some of the galleries and rooms around the museum and what artefacts and equipment we have in them.

A 2D map of the museum is available to download so you can see where things are before you visit:

2D Map of the museum (pdf)

Turing-Welchman Bombe

Breaking Enigma

A working reconstruction of one of the most famous wartime machines is now on display daily at The National Museum of Computing. With Colossus, the Bombe is widely regarded as having shortened the war, saved countless lives and was one of the early milestones on the road to our digital world.

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Tunny and Heath Robinson

From encrypt to decrypt during World War II

The Tunny Gallery, along with the Colossus Gallery, shows the entire World War II code-breaking process of the Lorenz-encrypted messages (Tunny as we called it) from signal intercept at the Knockholt receiving station in Kent to the production of the final decrypts on Tunny machines in Bletchley Park.

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Colossus

World-famous rebuild of the first electronic computer

Colossus, the world's first electronic computer, had a single purpose: to help decipher the Lorenz-encrypted (Tunny) messages between Hitler and his generals during World War II. The Colossus Gallery housing the rebuild of Colossus tells that remarkable story.

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Slide Rules and Calculators

When computers were people

For centuries before computers were invented, calculations could be performed on some ingenious and beautifully designed devices. An Abacus, slide rules, calculators of all shapes and sizes are on display and may even be remembered by some visitors.

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First Generation

How the early computers were constructed and looked

See what the very early computer systems looked like in the 1950s; The reconstruction of the first EDSAC computer, the Harwell Dekatron Computer, aka WITCH, and the original HEC prototype.

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Large Systems

When computers filled a room

Since the advent of the PC, the imminent demise of "big iron" has been predicted, but they are still here - alive and well in the cloud. The Museum's largest computer, the huge ICL 2966 of the 1980s is running most weekends, and there are a 1950's Marconi TAC, 1960's Elliotts and a 1960s IBM 1130.

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Software

How software has become embedded

Programmable machines have existed for at least 200 years, but computer languages did not develop until the emergence of the electronic computer in the 1950s. Today software controls many household and other gadgets. How many do you think are in your home?

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Personal Computers

See how computer games changed the personal computer

The PC Gallery with computers from the late 70s to the present is a real favourite with nearly all visitors. You can roll back the years and play retro games on the many working computers. Nostalgic for some, it's a revelation for younger visitors. BBCs, Macs, Spectrums, Amstrads ...

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Air Traffic Control

Behind the scenes at the airport

Did you know about the people and computers who ensure that you have safe take-off and landing for every flight you make? Visit the NATS Air Traffic Control Gallery and experience what it's like to be an air traffic controller in our virtual airport.

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The Classroom

The Beeb and its legacy

The landmark BBC Computer Literacy Project of the 1980s made a huge impact on education in Britain. The TNMOC classroom explains the origins of the BBC initiative and the development of Acorn - plus a working 1986 BBC Domesday system.

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Technology of the Internet

How the internet was made possible

Used by over 25% of the world’s population, the internet is the phenomenon of our age. The NPL Technology of the Internet Gallery traces communication technologies from the telegraph to the internet and explains Packet Switching, the key technology of modern communications.

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Library and Archive

A research treasure trove

We have a rapidly growing library of computing books and an archive of magazines, software, games and manuals. With more than 100,000 catalogued items to date, they are open to bona fide researchers. On public display are back copies of Computer Weekly from 25 and 40 years ago and the popular BeeBug magazine from the 1980s.

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