The National Museum of Computing, Milton Keynes

4.6
#4 of 19 in Museums in Buckinghamshire
Specialty Museum Museum
The National Museum of Computing located on Bletchley Park is an independent charity housing the largest collection of functional historic computers in Europe, including a rebuilt Colossus, the world’s first electronic programmable computer and the WITCH, the world's oldest working digital computer.

Anyone can become an individual member. See http://www.tnmoc.org/support/become-member

Corporate sponsors are always welcome: See http://www.tnmoc.org/support/become-sponsor

For more information, see www.tnmoc.org and follow @tnmoc on Twitter.
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Milton Keynes is growing quickly. The city's modern architectural features are built around the town's green spaces, and the center of town offers hotels and apartment rentals near attractions and transportation. Some attractions, such as stately homes, are located on the outskirts of the city. Consider a stay at a B&B outside the city center to be near the historical residences.
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4.6
  • Full of history about computing if that's what you like! Good fun for the children and also for us the adults remebering old video consoles and PCs from the eighties.  more »
  • If you were intrigued by "The Imitation Game," you'll find the museum an interesting coda to your visit to Bletchley Park. Learn about Alan Turing's accomplishments as well as those of others who used...  more »
  • Wonderful to see a surviving Colossus, and also particularly the Lorenz telex coding system. It's a real help in understanding how the cypher was cracked to actually see the Lorenz device - though of ...  more »
Google
  • Really interesting place. Good displays with lots of information. Seeing the computers working is impressive. Helpful staff as well. They did a good job in trying to answer my questions and improve my understanding. Wasn't busy on a Sunday afternoon either so don't be put off going if you think it might be crowded.
  • The star exhibit is the Colossus working replica, supported by other old computers such as WITCH and EDSAC. These are quite something to see. The other exhibits are a bit of a jumbled collection - a Cray was in a room with game machines! They need more space. It is unfortunate from an exhibition point of view that as computers became more modern they tended to become grey boxes, progressively smaller, which probably do not mean a lot unless you know something about them already. Nevertheless the enthusiast (mostly volunteer) staff are ready to talk about any of the exhibits. They had an interesting (for geeks!) time line of programming languages, but could do with one for operating systems too. Would have been nice to have seen more on UNIX (sole relevant exhibit was an unlabelled Silicon Graphics workstation in a corner) and anything on Linux - one of the interactive displays could have been on it rather than Windows. Beware that the full museum has quite limited opening times.
  • This is an extraordinary museum tracing the evolution of computing from the slide-rule to modern day computing. The staff are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the content. I cannot recommend it more.
  • Not really for those who don't have any technical knowledge of computers. As a computer scientist, I loved it, but my misses was completely lost. The chap who gave the talk on Colossus was superb, 10/10. I understood every word and was gripped for the whole talk. My misses didn't have a bloody clue about anything he said and found it very boring. The rest of the museum was pretty confusing in its layout, and more of an old storage house full of disused computers. A geeks paradise, but really not for those who dont know anything about computers. While this may seem obvious, normal museums are "public friendly", or "idiot proof" as we say. So anyone can go to them without prior knowledge and come away with loads. This computer museum - not so much.
  • Amazing history! Seeing the work of the code breakers makes you feel very humble and quite emotional. It is amazing on so many levels. That they managed to crack the Lorenz code from a mistake that an operator is amazing enough, but that they made machines to work out possible combinations for the machine settings AND the machines worked! It was also great to see old computers from my youth, brought back some great memories.