If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(AP)   A rebuilt British World War II code-cracking computer, so powerful that Winston Churchill ordered them destroyed for security reasons after the war, beaten by a home computer from Germany in a contest to decipher an encrypted radio message   (ap.google.com) divider line 37
    More: Ironic  
•       •       •

2999 clicks; posted to Geek » on 17 Nov 2007 at 7:14 PM (6 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



37 Comments   (+0 »)
   

Archived thread
 
2007-11-17 01:25:02 PM  
Gosh, y'know I wonder if today's cars are faster than cars built during WWII...
 
2007-11-17 01:45:25 PM  
ElvisThroop: Gosh, y'know I wonder if today's cars are faster than cars built during WWII...

This is it. And if cars' performance had improved at the rate computers have since then we'd be nipping around at 1,500 MPH on a thimblefull of gas*.

*Statistical analysis courtesy of my ass.
 
2007-11-17 03:26:42 PM  
AaaPha: And if cars' performance had improved at the rate computers have since then we'd be nipping around at 1,500 MPH on a thimblefull of gas

Apart from the ones running on Vista fuel perhaps
 
2007-11-17 04:55:28 PM  
I predict: in 60 years computers will half their current size, yet be 3 times more powerful.
 
2007-11-17 07:25:32 PM  
Modern computers are more powerful than ones built over 60 years ago? Who could have guessed?
 
2007-11-17 07:29:59 PM  
Aww, when I first read it, I thought the 60 year old computer was faster. Now THAT would have been hilarious.
 
2007-11-17 07:32:21 PM  
Even this guy would be surprised if the PC lost

www.robsell.com
 
2007-11-17 07:36:27 PM  
FTFA: "Putting Colossus in a competition with modern computers may be a bit unfair," Schueth wrote on his Web site.

Really?
 
2007-11-17 07:39:52 PM  
i64.photobucket.com

Not Impressed....
 
2007-11-17 07:48:29 PM  
AaaPha: ElvisThroop: Gosh, y'know I wonder if today's cars are faster than cars built during WWII...

This is it. And if cars' performance had improved at the rate computers have since then we'd be nipping around at 1,500 MPH on a thimblefull of gas*.

*Statistical analysis courtesy of my ass.


The argument the auto industry has used against this is that if the car progressed like the computer then the car would stall a few times per day and breakdown once a week and become obsolete in 2 years.

The increases in fuel efficiency have been impressive over the past few decades, but the impact has been countered by bigger cars and engines.
 
2007-11-17 08:04:51 PM  
AaaPha: And if cars' performance had improved at the rate computers have since then we'd be nipping around at 1,500 MPH on a thimblefull of gas*.

...and explode at least twice a day.
 
2007-11-17 08:07:37 PM  
ElvisThroop: Gosh, y'know I wonder if today's cars are faster than cars built during WWII...

I agree entirely with you, but I think the irony that submitter is referring to is the PC being in Germany.
 
2007-11-17 08:24:45 PM  
Colossus did incredibly well.

Not even double the time of the PC, and there were issues with reception and with a blown valve to deal with.

That's really impressive.
 
2007-11-17 08:32:24 PM  
Yeah guys cut Colossus some slack here. Sure it got beat, but I think it's pretty damn impressive a computer existed at all then. And then to have it still working and functional. You think your Dell laptop is gonna be working in ten years even? Blowing a valve? Man that thing doesn't even have transistors!
 
2007-11-17 08:34:42 PM  
steevmit: Apart from the ones running on Vista fuel perhaps

12349876: The argument the auto industry has used against this is that if the car progressed like the computer then the car would stall a few times per day and breakdown once a week and become obsolete in 2 years.

CornFedIowan: ...and explode at least twice a day.

Yes, yes, I know, poor metaphor... ;)
 
2007-11-17 09:27:21 PM  
img528.imageshack.us

wants to see one of his machines, just as soon as someone builds one
 
2007-11-17 10:15:11 PM  
PC LOAD LETTER: Colossus did incredibly well.

Not even double the time of the PC, and there were issues with reception and with a blown valve to deal with.

That's really impressive.


Came in here to say the same thing. Imagine this same test even 10 years ago. I doubt the desktop PC would have won.
 
2007-11-17 10:39:20 PM  
60 years ago, 1 gig hard drives were the size of a room...
 
2007-11-17 10:55:57 PM  
"I predict: in 60 years computers will half their current size, yet be 3 times more powerful."

Your estimate may even be just a bit cautious.
 
2007-11-17 11:13:50 PM  
Um, this is ironic because?.......
 
2007-11-18 12:51:50 AM  
WhyteRaven74: wants to see one of his machines, just as soon as someone builds one

he also wants to see rugbyjock's latest photoshop entry =)


/an infinite tape gets heavy after a while . . .
 
2007-11-18 01:46:26 AM  
Rusty_shack: he also wants to see rugbyjock's latest photoshop entry =)

bwahahahahahahahahahahahahaha well done!!!!
 
2007-11-18 02:27:23 AM  
1 gig hard drives were not room sized.. no such thing existed. hard drives, up until recently were measured in MB. ie 2MB or less for the industrial fridge sized hard drives I saw as a kid in 1976.

cache.gizmodo.com

I saw an interview with Tommy Flowers the telephone engineer who realized that the telephone switching equipment he was working with could be massively cascaded as the worlds first programmable computer.

They stored the programs and data on punch holed paper tape which ran at 40 miles an hour through the mechanism. They ran it up to 60, but when the tape tore, it made a tangled huge mess.. puts the term "crash" in a new perspective eh?
 
2007-11-18 07:34:51 AM  
so a pc beat a 60 year old machine? GOOD GOD
 
2007-11-18 08:03:20 AM  
I believe the underlying point is that it was a German that did it. I don't think anyone can really be surprised that the Colossus did not win.
 
2007-11-18 11:00:32 AM  
Meh.

The important thing is that the Colossus was fast enough at the time.

I sometimes wonder how WWII would have played out if the Brits had discovered that Turing was gay early on and denied him the security clearances needed to work on the codebreaking stuff.

Would the German ciphers have been broken anyway? What if they hadn't?
 
2007-11-18 11:06:00 AM  
AaaPha: ElvisThroop: Gosh, y'know I wonder if today's cars are faster than cars built during WWII...

This is it. And if cars' performance had improved at the rate computers have since then we'd be nipping around at 1,500 MPH on a thimblefull of gas*.

*Statistical analysis courtesy of my ass
plagarizing a well-circulated internet factoid.

FTFY

I like the corollary: that if autos were designed with the
original Unix philosophy, there would only be 1 indicator on
the dashboard: a light-up ! symbol, because the well-trained
system operator only needs to know that there is an error.
They will be sufficiently familiar with the normal behavior
of the system to diagnose the specific condition easily.

/Unix is fun, but so is bungee jumping.
//Neither should be the basis for a career infrastructure.
 
2007-11-18 01:13:19 PM  
Riche: Meh.

The important thing is that the Colossus was fast enough at the time.

I sometimes wonder how WWII would have played out if the Brits had discovered that Turing was gay early on and denied him the security clearances needed to work on the codebreaking stuff.

Would the German ciphers have been broken anyway? What if they hadn't?


The Poles provided most of the early work in deciphering German ciphers back in WWII. There was a machine built by them that would break the earliest three geared Enigma. Luckily for the Allies, the French resistance and the Polish underground whisked them to Britain. Turing did a lot of work, but I think the war would have been different without the Poles.

/I think I saw the original deciphering machine in the National Cryptological Museum
 
2007-11-18 08:01:59 PM  
Sheesh, who the hell would have known.

A news worthy artical would have been if the result were the other way around.

Meh.
 
2007-11-18 08:57:02 PM  
manalang.com
 
2007-11-18 09:45:35 PM  
Tainted1: Um, this is ironic because?.......

See, there was this war, and the people that made that computer were British. You see, in this war, they were fighting people from Germany. Now, the ironic part is...

...well, I forget how it ends, but your mother's a whore.
 
2007-11-18 09:50:35 PM  
Holy crap! An internet thread that's been going on for a while that's talking about WWII and a certain somebody's law hasn't taken effect yet!
 
c13
2007-11-18 10:14:55 PM  
Software2: Holy crap! An internet thread that's been going on for a while that's talking about WWII and a certain somebody's law hasn't taken effect yet!

Is mentioning a lack of Godwinning in itself a Godwin..?
 
2007-11-18 10:28:51 PM  
it all went downhill for the Colossus when I loaded Battlefield 1942, I thought I could shortcut the war, but it crashed to desktop and the error report wouldn't send.
 
2007-11-19 10:27:56 AM  
c13: Software2: Holy crap! An internet thread that's been going on for a while that's talking about WWII and a certain somebody's law hasn't taken effect yet!

Is mentioning a lack of Godwinning in itself a Godwin..?


That's why I didn't say his name moran!
 
2007-11-19 01:10:42 PM  
If Churchill hadn't had the project destroyed, if the commercial potential and benefit to the nation's economy had been seen, we'd all be using British computers now.

... yeah, we really dodged a bullet there, didn't we?
 
2007-11-19 02:49:13 PM  
You know who else could have beaten Colossus at deciphering messages....

/obligatory
 
Displayed 37 of 37 comments



This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »






Report