After two years spent putting it back together, the owners of the world's first digital, stored-program computer have come up with a novel way to celebrate its 50th anniversary. They want computer programmers to write software for it. The best program will be used in the anniversary celebrations. "Baby", as the machine is affectionately named, weighs 1 ton, is 16ft long, 7ft high and 2ft deep. It is now owned by the British Computer Conservation Society and ICL, the IT systems and services company. It uses 4Kw of electricity to power around 600 vacuum tubes. If it were built today, "Baby" would fit onto a silicon chip smaller than the size of a pinhead. Information on how to program "Baby", along with a simulator written by the University of Manchester where it was invented, and competition rules can be downloaded from the Web site. www.cs.man.ac.uk/prog98/.
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